At Ten Fu - Da Hong Pao Tea
Friday, March 06, 2009
I was in downtown Wangfujing to pick up an outfit I'd reserved the day before. I then remembered I had to restock my supply of oolong tea - Tie Guan Yin (Iron Buddha) to be exact - so off I went to a Ten Fu store in the same mall.
The two sales assistants were smoother than a cup of aged pu-erh. I'm a regular so they recognize me. And because I'm a regular, they know I'm not leaving the store empty-handed. So they draw me in, set me down at the tea table and began brewing a range of newly arrived teas while plying me with little snacks.
Hoover damn! These ladies are good.
To cut a long story short, I ended up buying two kinds of tea which set me back by €64. Tie Guan Yin at €30 for 150g and Da Hong Pao at €34 for a measly 80g. I was told the plantation only harvests Da Hong Pao once a year. I shall just have to take their word for it. Whatever it is, there's no denying the taste nor quality. By all definitions it is a good cup of tea but most importantly, I find it delicious. The Da Hong Pao (Big Red Robe which really should be known as Big Red Hole in My Pocket) will be my little treat of the week.
During steeping, the leaves emit a fresh and fragrant aroma; with a hint of peach even. It goes down easily and leaves a refreshing sweet aftertaste without the parched feeling one gets from certain kinds of Chinese tea.
Here's how to brew Da Hong Pao Tea. I will try the recommended method over the weekend with my special brown clay tea set. So far, I've drunk it from a clear double barrel glass cup. Very unceremonious of me!
The Dutchess of Cookalot whipped this up at 2:49 am