Review: Canton Tea Co. Dan Cong Black

Black Tea, Canton Tea Co. Add comments
Vanessa’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"The dry leaf's spiciness that so captivated me is merely an afterthought in the taste, but there is so much else going on here that I am easily distracted by the many other flavors. "
Vanessa’s Teaview: 8/10
Other Teaviews: Dan gave it 8.6/10, Geoff gave it 8.3/10
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Canton Tea Company is a tea vendor that continues to impress me with their offerings of high-quality and varied teas, so I try not to miss any opportunities to sample their products. Their Dan Cong Black tea is a tea composed of long, dark, wiry leaves that carry a distinct spicy note, perhaps best described as a combination of cinnamon and licorice or anise. The aroma of the dry leaves proimises a rich brew. The recommended brewing parameters provided by CTC do indicate that some attention must be given to the preparation of these leaves, starting with a rinsing of the leaves in boiling water then infusing the leaves in 185-degree F water. Interestingly, no particular infusion time was suggested, instead leaving this up to the preparer to experiment with. I opted for my standard go-to brewing time of three minutes.
After just one sip, my reaction to this tea was "wow"...with the expression containing equal parts of being impressed and being surprised. The brew was, indeed, rich in flavor, but very different from what the scent of the dry leaves suggested. The flavor is redolent of over-ripe fruits and honey, with an underlying earthy pungency that reminds me ever so slightly of a pu-erh tea. The dry leaf's spiciness that so captivated me is merely an afterthought in the taste, but there is so much else going on here that I am easily distracted by the many other flavors. The tea is hearty and intense, and also sweet and smooth.
This is a unique tea, without question, and I can see this brew eliciting immediate satisfaction in many tea drinkers, but also perhaps immediate dislike from others. I can't say that I see this being a universally appealing tea, but for those that like unique teas with pungent flavors, this is certainly worth trying.

— To purchase Canton Tea Co. Dan Cong Black, or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

Teaviews Member: Vanessa Vanessa
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