Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Saint of Taiwan Tea- Dong Ding Tea / 台灣茶中之聖―凍頂茶


Ten Famous Taiwan Tea Series 1 / 台灣十大名茶系列 1

Blessed with a superior tea growing environment and skilled manufacturing techniques, Taiwan boasts a wide variety of tea with its own flavor and characteristics, such as the Wenshan Pouchong tea, Ti Guanying tea, Dong Ding tea, the Bai Hau Oolong tea, Sansha Longjing tea, the high mountain tea, the Longquan tea, the Pine and Cypress Evergreen tea, the Ali Mountain Pearly Dew tea, and the Sun-Moon Lake black tea. All together, there are ten famous Taiwan teas, and we will introduce each one to you.


Dong Ding tea is produced in Dong Ding Mountain located in Nantou Lugu Town, Taiwan. It has a fine reputation as “the Saint among Taiwan Tea”. Its fresh leaves are harvested from the “Qingxing” oolong tea tree. Therefore it is also named “Dong Ding Oolong Tea”. Dong Ding (frozen top) is the name of the mountain, and oolong is the species name. “Hot kneading and twisting” is the unique technique to make Dong Ding tea. According to its fermentation degree, Dong Ding tea belongs to the qing tea category with medium fermentation, and after kneading and twisting, tea shape becomes spherical.


Dong Ding tea has a long history and at present the production region amounts to 2000 hectares. In 1855, a candidate for the imperial exam named Lin Fengchi from Lugu town in Nantou County, brought back 36 Qingxing oolong tea seedlings from Wuyi Mt., Fujian Province, and planted parts of them on the mountains near Qiling Pond of Lugu Town. This is the beginning of Dong Ding oolong tea. After more than 100 years of development, especially in the last ten years, through vigorous counseling from the government and close coordination from local farmers, Dong Ding tea has developed into a world-famous brand, a representative name for Taiwan tea.

凍頂茶的歷史悠久,目前栽培面積廣達2000公頃。一八五五年南投縣鹿谷鄉舉人林鳳池,從福建武夷山帶回36株青心烏龍茶苗,其中一部份種植於鹿谷鄉麒麟潭邊的山麓上,是為「凍頂茶」的開端。經過一百多年的發展,尤其最近十幾年來,在政府有關單位大力輔導及當地農民的密切配合下,已發展成為家喻戶曉、中外馳名的台灣茶的代表作 。 

High quality Dong Ding tea leaf comes in a fresh dark green color and has ash spots like frog skin. Tea leaf strip is tight and curly. Dry tea has an intense fragrance; after brewing, the tea assumes a clear bright golden amber color. The aroma is delicate and charming, with a hint of sweet-scented osmanthus fragrance. Tea tastes mellow and smooth with a sweet and rich after taste. There’s red inlay around the leaf edge, and a pale-green hue in the middle of each leaf. “Dong Ding” tea has outstanding quality, and its elegant fragrance is widely favored by tea lovers all over the world.


Unlike Pouchong tea, which is simple and fresh, Dong Ding oolong tea has a more thought-provoking charisma. It is more like a sophisticated lady, who has experienced life’s ups and downs, and yet still keeps her beliefs in life with no regret. With the trace carved by time, the taste gets mellower and more fragrant as it ages. By tasting Dong Ding oolong tea, you might have another realization towards the different characteristics of beauty in your life.

不似包種茶的青春動人,凍頂烏龍茶的美卻 是耐人尋味的,它像是歷經滄桑的婦女,看盡人世的悲歡離合,對生命無悔的堅持,雕刻出歲月的痕跡,滋味越醇越香。在品茗凍頂烏龍茶中,也許你會對生命展現出不同特色的美有另一種領悟。

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