November 04, 2014

Tea Review: Grand Cru Teas from Palais des Thés

Oolong is a pleasure to prepare and to drink. This is the case for two new Grand Cru oolongs from Palais des Thés. The first is Dong Ding Jade Oolong from Taiwan. The second is Feng Huang Dan Cong Special Oolong (Special Phoenix) from Guangdong Province in China (pictured above).

The dry leaves of the Dong Ding are small, perfectly rolled balls which uncurl into long, intact leaves. The liquor is smooth and sweet with a multi-floral aroma. It is easy to drink many cups of this jade oolong in one sitting.

In contrast to the Dong Ding, the leaves of the Phoenix are semi-fermented and not rolled. The liquor is amber in color and tastes like a Darjeeling, if you can believe it. This grand cru oolong is simultaneously sweet, woodsy, fruity, and floral. This description sounds like a wine's tasting notes! According to Wikipedia, cru refers to "a vineyard or group of vineyards, especially one of recognized quality" and a grand cru designation is applied to "a vineyard known for its favorable reputation in producing wine." Je suis d'accord avec cette classification de ce thé!

Both teas are available online at and in both of the brand’s New York City boutiques - SoHo (156 Prince Street) and UWS (194 Columbus Avenue).

Thank you to Fraiche PR and Communications for the grand cru samples.


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