Dancong (单丛, Dān Cóng) also called Fenghuang Dancong or Phoenix Dancong is a kind of Chinese oolong tea. It is native to the Fenghuang Town in the Chaozhou City of Guangdong Province. Dancong means “excellent single tea tree”. Fenghuang means “phoenix”.
Like Wuyi rock tea, Dancong has many types, more than 80 varieties, and has many different fragrances. Dancong is also a national geographical indication protection product of China.
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History of Dancong
According to historical records, Dancong tea trees began to be cultivated in the late Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279), more than 900 years ago.
There are more than 3,700 ancient tea trees in Chaozhou that are more than 200 years old, and one of them is called “Song Cha” with a history of more than 600 years.
In 1278, the emperor of the Southern Song Dynasty passed through Feng Huang Town and was thirsty. The local tea farmer offered the Dancong. After drinking it, the emperor felt refreshed and named it “Song Cha”.
In the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), Dancong became a tribute tea due to its excellent quality.
During 1875-1908, in order to further improve the quality of tea, the local tea farmers selected and cultivated excellent single plants from tens of thousands of ancient tea trees. They carried out single-plant picking, single-plant production, and single-plant sales, therefore Dancong (single tea tree) appeared.
Growth Environment of Dancong
The tea production area of Feng Huang Town has the characteristics of high mountains, short sunshine, heavy cloud, and rainfall, not cold in winter and not hot in summer, which is very suitable for the growth of tea trees. There is no obvious dormancy period for the growth of tea trees, and the tea can be produced in all seasons.
The yellow soil and red soil in Feng Huang Town are mainly distributed over 400 meters above sea level. The soil is rich in organic matter and dozens of trace elements, which play an important role in the formation of the characteristics of Dancong.
In addition, Fenghuang Town has many rivers, reasonable distribution of reservoirs, and abundant water resources. Therefore, in the dry season, except for the tea gardens in the plains that only need to be irrigated during the tea seedling period, the tea gardens in the mountainous areas generally do not need to be irrigated.
Types of Dancong
Dancong is famous for its rich varieties and rich fragrances.
There are more than 80 types of Dancong, some of which are named after the leaf shape, some after the leaf color, some after the leaf size, some after the tea fragrance, and so on.
Each type of Dancong has a different shape, color, fragrance, and taste. The color of tea soup is usually orange-yellow, red-brown, and golden.
The top 10 fragrances of Dancong:
- Mi Lan Xiang
- Ya Shi Xiang
- Apricot fragrance
- Orchid fragrance
- Jasmine fragrance
- Gardenia fragrance
- Tuberose fragrance
- Cinnamon fragrance
- Osmanthus fragrance
- Yulan Magnolia fragrance
- White Ginger Lily fragrance
Dancong has a unique “mountain flavor” which is a meaningful flavor and can’t be expressed. The “mountain flavor” is the key to the characteristics of Dangong tea, which is different from other teas.
The unique characteristics of Dancong can not be separated from three necessary conditions: superior growth environment, excellent tea trees, and exquisite processing technology.
Benefits of Dancong
Dancong is rich in tea polyphenols, alkaloids, amino acids, vitamins, trace elements, etc, which have good pharmacological effects.
Benefits of Dancong:
- Weight loss
- Help digestion
- Increase appetite
- Nourish stomach
- Lower cholesterol
- Lower blood sugar