Dian hong ,"Yunnan Red", is a Chinese black tea which is used as a relatively high end gourmet black tea and is sometimes used in various tea blends. The main difference between Dian hong and other Chinese black teas is the amount of fine leaf buds, or "golden tips," present in the dried tea. Finer Dian hong teas produces a brew that is brassy golden orange in colour with a sweet, gentle aroma and no astringency. Cheaper varieties of Dian hong produce a darker brownish brew that can be very bitter.

Teas grown in the Yunnan Province of China prior to the Han dynasty were typically exported in a compressed form similar to modern pu-erh tea. Dian hong is a relatively new product from Yunnan that began production in the early 20th century. The word "Diān" is the short name for the Yunnan region while "hóng" means "red (tea)"; as such, these teas are sometimes simply referred to as Yunnan red or Yunnan black. However, such references are often confusing due to the other varieties of teas produced in Yunnan as well as the ambiguous nature of the color classifications.

Tea produce process

The tea is produced at an average elevation of 600-800 meters above sea level. This tea is picked in the middle of April, with a picking standard of 1 bud to 2-3 tender leaves. Fresh tea leaves will be carried back to the factory where they are left to wither in the shade or under sunshine for a few hours to loose some of their moisture. After the leaves have been withered, they use a special wind tunnel made from woven bamboo or wood. The tunnel is about 3 feet tall and has three layers of bamboo with holes for wind to travel through. The leaves are set on the top sheet of bamboo for about 5 hours to remove about 50% of their moisture. After the wind tunnel, tea makers will fire the tea in a hot rolling machine to soften the leaves before they are kneaded. This is done quickly yet carefully, so as not to denature the enzymes in the leaf that will drive its oxidation. Tea makers use a kneading machine to squeeze out even more moisture and spur on oxidation the leaves. After this, the tea will be processed in to its shape by wrapping the leaves in fabric and placing them in a small 1/2 tall square box for a few hours. This slowly finishes the oxidation process. During this time, the tea master will check the leaves every so often to mix and distribute their heat and also check the quality of their aroma and color. When the leaves have just turned to brown, the tea master will stop oxidation and send to the oven to dry. They must be very careful to not over-oxidize the tea, otherwise it will turn sour. After the tea has been dried in the oven, the leaves are sorted by hand to remove untwisted large leaves and sprigs.

Tea Information

  • Grown on Fengqing county, Yunan
  • pekoe colored is mix orange buds with black leaves
  • A bright orange-red coloured tea
  • A rich, complex but smooth and fresh taste
  • Moderate caffeine
  • One piece for one cup

Tea History

The history of this particular type of Dian Hong black tea only stretches back about 100 years while black tea have almost 2000 years history in China.  Dian Hong was first crafted in the 1930's by the name of Feng Shaoqiu.  The first batches of Dian Hong were instantly popular, and were exported through Hong Kong to England, where it became very much sought after due to its high price and favour with the Queen at the time, who preferred it – somewhat scandalously – to the in-favour Indian teas commonly drunk at that time.Now Dian Hong has become one of the most respected and widely known types of Chinese black tea.  Held in extremely high regard in China, it is often presented by the government there as gifts to visiting dignitaries.

In 1939, Yunnan Province began producing black tea. The Chinese wanted to move the business of exporting of tea out of the east coast of China (then occupied by the Japanese Army) to the border of Burma in Yunnan. Two accomplished tea masters, Feng Shao Qiu and Fan He Jun went to Yunnan to research the area for tea cultivation. They found that Feng Qing County in southwest Yunnan was an ideal place to start producing good quality tea. The soil in this area was red colored and nutrient rich and was already growing a good number of tea bushes. They set up a factory and bean to produce a large amount of tea.

Tea Map

Grown on Fengqing county, Yunan province, China

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Black Dragon Pearls Tea - Yunnan Dian Hong Tea

  • Brand: Bestitea
  • Product Code: TEA012
  • Availability: In Stock
  • $2.95

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