The production of Phoenix Dan Cong tea involves the following processes:
The tea leaves are harvested by hand. Subsequently, they are left to wilt in the open air on bamboo mats. This leads to a reduction of water content by 10-15%. This is an important prerequisite for the next stages of processing.
Once the leaves have lost sufficient moisture and strength, they undergo oxidation. During this process, the plant cells are broken up by intensive agitation, allowing the plant's own enzymes to reach the outside. These react with the surrounding oxygen and cause a slight red colouration of the leaves. This is accompanied by a change in taste, as the leaves become sweeter. Care is taken to achieve a ratio of 20% more oxidised red leaves and 80% less oxidised leaves. Within this process, the tea leaves begin to develop their aromatic, seductive floral fragrance.
In the next step, the leaves are rolled. The special technique used in this process gives them their typical striped shape. The cell walls are opened further, which intensifies the oxidation even more.
The roasting and heating of the tea leaves is important for the development of the tea's unique flavours. Roasting completes the oxidation process and the transformation of the leaves' taste, while at the same time adding a complementary roasted note to the basic floral-sweet character. Only in the best Dan Congs does the roasting note complement the flavour and not dominate it.
The roasting process itself consists of two phases. These include an intensive roasting at 130-140°C and a subsequent roasting at 90-100°C lasting about 3 hours.
This tea is exclusively sourced from the above mentioned tea farm on Phoenix Mountain.
Sourced directly from the tea farmer.