Tuesday, February 5, 2013

High Mountain Oolong by DAVIDsTEA

Just few months ago I didn't know what oolong was.  I knew about green tea, white tea, black tea and herbals.  Oolong was not in my vocabulary.

Ever since I switched over to loose tea I started paying closer attention to different kinds of teas and learning as much as I could.  The word oolong was being thrown around quite a bit and I began noticing oolong tea bags at the local health food store. I often wondered about this mysterious tea with a fancy name.  What exactly did it taste like?

About two weeks ago I decided to find out and ordered High Mountain Oolong from DAVIDsTEA after reading some great reviews on Steepster.  At $10 per 25g this tea is in the premium price range and as a result, my expectations were high.

Opening the package revealed beautifully curled green tea leaves with mild, unassuming aroma.  The smell was reminiscent of green tea only a lot more subtle.

I began the brewing process by first steeping the tea for 30 seconds to rinse and open up the leaves a bit.  I followed that with a 5 minute steep.  The water for both steeps was at near boiling at around 94C.  The leaves unfurled taking up a lot of space and looked gorgeous.

The steeped tea smelled delicious, a little sweet with a hint of wet wood aroma.  By taking a sip I was thrown into an array of flavors very foreign to me.  Oolong tea production lies somewhere in the middle between gentle handling and non-oxidation of green tea and complete oxidation of black tea.  What I was tasting here was definitely complex and very different from both green and black teas that I know.  There was something to this tea I couldn't put my finger on.  A very pleasant aroma that hit me every time I put my nose to the teacup and a delicious flavor that lingered with every sip.  It tasted buttery and a bit vegetal but not the same vegetal taste you would get from green tea.  I also detected a mild and very pleasant astringency at the back of my tongue.

By now I should be done with the tasting but no... something was luring me back.  That taste and aroma that returned every time I took a sip, that made this tea distinct from all the other teas I tried.  It intrigued me and made me sip over and over to try and figure it out.  It was sweet and a bit floral and when I closed my eyes I  imagined wild flowers in the woods after a pouring rain.

Overall this was a delicious tea, the kind that I wouldn't mind having every day.  In this price range though, it will have to remain a treat but a treat I'll be delighted to have.

Steeping temperature: 94C

Steeping time: 5 minutes

Steeped in: glass teapot


No comments:

Post a Comment