Eight Immortals is a lesser produced by highly loved cultivar of Phoenix Oolong (aka Dan Cong Oolong). It is a variety which is often listed as the number one Dan Cong aroma by the farmers in that area because it has a very deep, rich and more 'adult' taste compared with the other Dan Congs out there.
For those that don't know about Dan Cong tea, here is a very quick catch up. This is an ancient Oolong produced in Guangdong with unparalleled levels of aromatics which mimic other plants, flowers and fruits. The aroma characters of the different cultivars have been carefully preserved through the propagation of tea plants from single, ancient 'mother trees'. These original trees grew naturally from seed and the farmers in that area have assigned certain aromatic names to these trees and created a lineage to ensure that the aromatics are maintained.
We have curated a selection of our favourite Dan Cong tea cultivars so check out the related products at the end of this page and pick up a few to experience their aromatics.
Watch as we taste our way through these Oolongs and describe the differences to help you decide.
Join us in Wudong mountain to learn about the making of Dan Cong tea.
Our Eight Immortals tea is made from tea trees which are older than 50 years for a richer taste and is green in the hallowed terroirs of the Wudong mountain. This is very different from Garden or Plantation tea which will have much weaker flavour and mouthfeel.
Learn more about Dan Congs
Dan Cong means 'Single Bush'. But not all Phoenix Oolong is actually a Dan Cong, in fact, most tea buyers will buy garden bush tea which is being sold as single bush. Similarly, any tea tree that is grown from seed could be called Dan Cong so this name is a bit erroneous.
Whatever the details of the name, one thing is for sure, the flavour difference between garden Phoenix Oolong and true Dan Cong Phoenix Oolong is remarkable. This is because of a few factors:
1. Garden tea is younger
The best tea comes from leaves that have high mineral content. The younger the tea bush the smaller the roots which means that they cannot absorb many minerals from the soil. Because the garden tea is cultivated together, each plant is competing with many neighbouring tea plants for the same minerals so they just can't get as much.
2. Variety of vegetation
Garden tea has almost no variety of vegetation. Semi wild Dan Cong however has plenty of vegetation and rocks around it. As the plant leaves fall or the rain filters through the rocks the soil is enriched with more variety of nutrients for the tea to absorb.
3. Harsher environment
The semi wild Dan Cong Phoenix Oolong grows on steep and rocky mountains. This puts the plant under stress which means that the tea grows slowly. The slower the growth the richer the mineral content in the leaves making a more powerful and fragrant drink.