Black Tea

Premium Dian Hong – A true birthday treat

I am now officially 25 years old which makes me feel ooooold even though I realise that it’s not actually that old. My day yesterday was pleasant enough,  I visited my local tea cafe ‘St Martins Tea and Coffee Merchants’ and lovingly drank a pot of Sencha Fukuju (which was very delicious) and I ended up buying a 125g bag to take home. After that I thought I would treat myself and found a pub that stocks local and original drinks and they had Toffee Apple Cider on tap (which was also very delicious).

The packaging information.
The packaging information.

It wasn’t until this morning that I received my Dragon Tea House order that was placed 3 weeks ago. My husband had no idea what to get me for my birthday so I told him to pay for an order I had been building up for a while . Most of what I purchased are unusual Pu Erh samples but my tea of choice for any occasion would be Yunnan based which is why I selected this Premium Dian Hong.

During third century BC, the central area of Yunnan, around present day Kunming (major city), was known as ‘Dian’. The name Dian Hong means “Yunnan Black tea”. Often Yunnan black teas are referred to as Dian Hong teas. Yunnan black teas vary in their flavor and appearance. – Dragon Tea House website.

Premium Dian Hong in packaging.
Premium Dian Hong in packaging.

In appearance this Dian Hong consists of gold and brown leaves that have been thinly rolled and form squiggly/curly shapes. The gold leaves are of great quality as you can see when you look closely, they reflect light and have a shimmer that really stands out.

Premium Dian Hong in raw form.
Premium Dian Hong in raw form.
Leaves once rinsed.
Leaves once rinsed.

Whilst raw Dian Hong has an interesting scent that is malty, dark and fruity. It reminds me of an unsweetened fruit cake or malt loaf.

Method: Gaiwan Tea: 5g 5 steeps: rinse,15s,25s,40s,1m10s,1m30s 85ºC/185ºF


Steep 1 – 15 seconds 

Golden red brown in colour with a rich, sweet, malty scent. The first thing that strikes me is the smoothness that comes packed with a sweet malty mist of flavour. It’s mellow yet rich and very clean tasting. A touch of sweetness lay amongst the malt.

Steep 2 – 25 seconds 

Maltier in flavour with a much richer and velvety after taste. The sweetness is better blended and does not stand out as much as the previous steep. It also remains fresh, misty and mellow.

Steep 3 – 40 seconds 

There is a slight roasted flavour that mixed with the sweet and fruity malt not only makes it smell like malt loaf but also taste like it. Still remains rich, smooth and consistent to the previous steeps.  When I say fruity I mean fermented like currants and raisins.

Steep 4 – 1 minute 10 seconds

Toning down now in it’s rich flavour. The sweetness is once again in front of the malt rather than being paired with it equally in the previous steep. Very light, a little smoky and still very smooth.

Steep 5 – 1 minute 30 seconds 

Golden brown in colour. Not much left now beyond a dark fruity sweetness with only a slight malt touch. Perhaps also a slight floral touch is present now too mixed in with the fruit. Even though it’s very subtle it’s still a nice steep and very worth drinking.


Tea leaves after steeps.
Tea leaves after steeps.

I can now also officially say that this truly is of premium quality and was well worth the few extra dollars. Throughout all 5 steeps there was no bitterness and it remained fresh and mellow. Once you go premium and high quality with Dian Hong you will never go back.

The perfect drink to celebrate my post birthday. 🙂

4 thoughts on “Premium Dian Hong – A true birthday treat

  1. Happy Birthday!!! Though in the US many be old enough to rent car all on your own 25 is far from old. Trust me I stil have another 10 years experience over you and that is old. LOL 🙂

  2. I love this tea, by that I mean black Yunnans they are among my favorites. The golden twisted bits are beautiful to look at, the leaf buds I mean. I’ve had some Dian Hong that was practically all bud. Just wonderful. Interesting way you steeped it, I brew it much longer, probably 2 minutes but then I don’t re-brew it as often. Thanks for sharing your nice pics.

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