Charcoal Dong Ding

We love this tea. It is roasted by Charcoal Roast Master Zhan. Drinking his tea and learning from him inspired us to film a documentary. He is a living treasure of Taiwanese tea culture, a very wise man. The name he gave this tea is "The Twittering Mountain Spring".

When making this tea, he starts with a base of traditional style Dong Ding (like this one). It is medium oxidized, so he roasts it fairly heavily. His philosophy is to follow the natural base of the tea, and roast it accordingly. His roast is never meant to add a flavor to the tea; he uses roasting to elevate the tea so it provides something extra for the drinker. Teas that he finishes become clearer, softer and deeper.

The soup is thick and rich in the mouth, and still very soft. The aroma of the wet leaves rises right to the top of the head. After swallowing, salivation is quick and assertive. The aftertaste is very long and complex. It shows up into the throat sweet, warm and buzzy.

Intentional, conscious drinking of this tea can reveal that the liquid penetrates all the way down to the belly and emanates a warmth from where it rests. This tea has a lot to teach.