Dan Chong oolong tea is one of my favorites. It comes in many varietals, and they all have a distinctive fragrance.
Honey, Magnolia, Lichee, Sandalwood, Ginger, Cinnamon, Yellow orchid, Purple Orchid, there was even a famous one that has since fell out of favor that smelled faintly of rotting sweet potato. Or another possible translation is fermenting sweet potato. Intriguing but pretty clear why it fell out of favor. Today I tasted a spring Dan Chong that was not Ginger, (the most expensive and rare of all) but had faint ginger flower notes. I asked what a ginger flower was. I’d never seen one before. I wondered if it’s the flower of the plant whose root I eat. When my friend looked up a picture and showed me the flower, I replied, I don’t believe we have that in the states.
The very next day a small bouquet of ginger flowers appeared at the tea house. They were small and delicate, their leaves each the size of a quarter. They were lovely and not overly cloying, and they smelled heady and soft, and faintly spicy, like ginger.