Monday, November 12, 2012
Tea From Taiwan, Hua Gang Oolong Tea
This premium-quality oolong tea is grown in the Li Shan mountain range at an altitude of 2400 meters. The climate of these high mountains is ideal for growing fine oolong tea. The cool air and high humidity produce a tea with full, robust flavor and long-lasting aftertaste.
The brewed tea has an exquisite aroma and brews to an appealing amber liquor. The leaves can can be re-brewed many times while maintaining a full flavor.
Tea grown on Mount Li (Li Shan or Pear Mountain) is the most prized oolong tea in Taiwan. It is ideally suited for gong fu style brewing.
Sample provided by Tea From Taiwan
Price: $61/150g or about 1.22 per 3g serving
The sample packet is brightly colored and vacuum-sealed. I cut open the top and noticed an oxygen absorber packet. The dry leaf has no appreciable scent. The sample is 6g so I used half of it for this round. The nuggets are very tightly packed and dark green with some lighter colored streaks. There are some stems visible.
There are no steeping instructions on the packet so I used my normal parameters - 3g of leaf in my press with water that is heavily steaming but well below boiling. I steeped for 2 minutes. The leaf pretty much stayed near the surface. The color of the liquor is a light yellow. The wet leaf is not completely relaxed and there is already a lot of it. The wet leaf aroma is that of steamed spinach. The liquor scent is green oolong – kind of floral.
I sipped this without additives and it is the single most buttery almost popcorn flavored tea I have tried to date. Really exceptional. By mid sip it blooms with a short floral blast. It literally comes out of nowhere. Just as it almost reaches a point where it would concern me it just disappears, fading into something akin to the smell of a geranium plant mixed with the taste of dandelion. The aftertaste is lingering green oolong and floral. Ok, the more I sip the more I am sensing a spice flavor. I believe it is nutmeg or something that I associate with squash pie. What a ride!
I added sweetener so see how it would respond. I must say this is the exception to the rule as far as my tastes go. It actually tastes so delicious without the additives that I wish I hadn’t tampered with it. Trust me, that seldom happens. I love my Splenda but not with the first cup of this wonderful tea.
With cup two I noticed the leaf had expanded to the point I could not see through the press. The color of the tea in the cup is a little darker yellow with a tint of light green. The butteriness is very much reduced. This is now a highly floral green oolong. The aftertaste is somewhat like biting into the rind of a watermelon.
The third cup is much lighter in flavor. It still has a strong and lingering aftertaste.
I really like this. Highly recommend!
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