Tie Guan Yin Special Edition from Life in Teacup

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Life in Teacup

Product Description:

Traditional charcoal roast with Tie Guan Yin and Mao Xie.

Taster’s Review:

I adore Oolong teas, and this Tie Guan Yin is superb!

The leaves are dark, a result of charcoal roasting.  The roasting has imparted a delicious toasty flavor to the natural nutty tones of the Oolong.  The buttery flavor that is often a part of Oolong has become more of a caramel sweetness.  It’s almost like a dessert in a teacup!

The sip starts with with an introduction of the sweet yet savory roasted nut flavor which soon gives way to a hint of flower (almost honeysuckle-esque).  The caramel notes sit in the background, never becoming too prominent or overwhelming.  The mouthfeel here is light, much lighter than a very green Oolong would be, and not nearly as creamy.  A whisper of smoke weaves its way throughout the sip and remains through the aftertaste.

Overall the tea is bittersweet with the emphasis on sweet rather than on bitter.  There is a moderate amount of cleansing astringency at the finish.  In subsequent infusions, I noticed that the smoky flavor came through a little more – but it was never an overpowering presence.

It’s absolutely delicious and a must try for Oolong enthusiasts.

I love all the teas that I’ve tried thus far from Life in Teacup.  I love their philosophy too, which can be read on their homepage:

“We believe tea is a luxury of time, and not necessarily a luxury of money.”

I agree.  While some teas can be extraordinarily expensive, I like it when I find a company that offers delicious, high quality teas at an affordable price, such as Life in Teacup!

Yongchun Fo Shou (Bergamot) Oolong Superior Grade Tea from Life In Teacup

Tea Type: Oolong

Where To Buy: Life In Teacup

Product Description:

The origin of Fo Shou tea cultivar is a mystery. Many people say it was obtained by engrafting tea tree with Fo Shou (bergamot) tree. The engrafting theory of Fo Shou oolong has never been proved. But the characteristics of this tea do remind a drinker of fragrance of Fo Shou fruits.

Brew method:
1a. Oolong, ball-shaped dry tea leaves

  • Vessel: gaiwan or small teapot
  • Water temperature: newly boiled water (above 95 °C or 203 °F)
  • Amount of leaves: 5 gram for every 120ml total volume (Or reduce the amount to 3 gram for some heavy oxidation and/or heavy roast products)
  • Warm-up infusion: pour hot water in the vessel, and immediately drain it. Wait for about 1min. before starting the next infusion.
  • Time for each of the first 3 infusions (after warm-up): 20sec. (Or reduce the infusion time to 10-15sec. for some heavy oxidation and/or heavy roast products)
  • Extend infusion time based on taste for later infusions. Most oolong tea can well last for at least 5-7 infusions.

Or:

  • Vessel: mug
  • Water temperature: (same as “1a”) newly boiled water (around 95 °C or 203 °F)
  • Amount of leaves: 15-20 grains of dry tea leaves
  • Steep time: 1-2 minutes
  • Re-steep: when there is 1/3 liquor left in the vessel, add hot water to re-steep.

Tasters Review:

Plain and Simple…I LOVE THIS.  I would rate this above 95% any day of the week!

Yongchun Fo Shou (Bergamot) Oolong Superior Grade Tea from Life In Teacup smells like a sweet-floral and mellow yet juicy fruit of the citrus variety. The Infusion color is that of a light-oolong.  The taste is out of this world…a pure delight!  It’s very pure, crisp, and thirst quenching.  I could tell it was an Oolong by it’s taste but it’s so much more than that…it’s incredible!   I really, really like this! The flavor of the oolong is one thing but the Bergamot is another.  I’ve never tasted a bergamot flavor like this and I must say after tasting it – all Bergamot should taste like this!  The flavor doesn’t take over the natural goodness of the oolong and the bergamot doesn’t taste fake or chemically at all!

I have also tried the other two Bergamot Fo Shou Oolongs and I think the Superior really IS superior!  I like all 3 of the offerings but this one is my favorite one of the 3.  Down the road I plan on reviewing the other 2 as well.  BUT…in the meantime…I encourage all of your Oolong Lovers to try this one!  It’s worth it!!

Dong Ding Oolong traditional medium roast Competition Grade IV from Life In Teacup

Tea Type: Oolong

Where To Buy: Life In Teacup

Product Description:

Production Year: 2009
Production Season: winter
Production Region: Nantou County, Taiwan
Style: Traditional medium roast

Brewing 1a: Oolong, ball-shaped dry tea leaves
Vessel: gaiwan or small teapot
Water temperature: newly boiled water (above 95 °C or 203 °F)
Amount of leaves: 5 gram for every 120ml total volume (Or reduce the amount to 3 gram for some heavy oxidation and/or heavy roast products)
Warm-up infusion: pour hot water in the vessel, and immediately drain it. Wait for about 1min. before starting the next infusion.
Time for each of the first 3 infusions (after warm-up): 20sec. (Or reduce the infusion time to 10-15sec. for some heavy oxidation and/or heavy roast products)
Extend infusion time based on taste for later infusions. Most oolong tea can well last for at least 5-7 infusions.

Tasters Review:

I had this for the very first time the other day and was very pleased.

This is VERY different than any Oolong I have tried!  Imagine this…roasty and toasty…woodsy and leafy…hearty and strong!   At first I thought it smelled like a “New Car Smell” type air freshener…but it was a little more leaf-like than that.  Regardless I think the reasons this is different are the reasons I like it so much! This is tasty and interesting!   If you are into roasted oolongs – try this!  If you have never had a roasted type Oolong before taste it and then taste it again!  I noticed that the taste changes as it cools at room temperature.  I also think this is pretty good cold/iced, too!

Frosty Spring Yunnan Roast Green from Life In Teacup

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Life In Teacup

Company Description:

Production Year:  2010

Production Season:  Pre-Spring, January 1, 2010

Production Region:  Yunan Province, Xi Shuang Ban Na

Style:  Hong Qing (roasted)

Taster’s Review:

This is an amazing cup of tea!

Prior to and during infusion, the tea smells very strongly of vegetables.  The brewed liquor is a softer smell, but still smells like vegetables mingling with a light, roasted nut aroma.  It’s very intriguing.

The flavor is intense!  It has a lovely roasted flavor that resembles buttery chestnuts and roasted vegetables.  In the finish, there is a tart/tangy note that seems to waft over the palate.  There is more astringency than I am typically accustomed to with a green tea, but, it isn’t hindering me from enjoying the tea.

There is also a beautiful sweetness to this cup… a light, flowery sweetness.  It’s really quite enchanting!

I brewed this tea in my gaiwan and I would suggest brewing it no other way!  I obtained a vibrant, delicious and fragrant cup of tea with a short brew time of 1 minute.  The leaves expand quite a bit so I don’t recommend brewing this using an infuser – there just won’t be enough room for the leaves to completely unfurl, and you’ll risk losing some delightfully impressive flavor.

The leaves submit several infusions.  After brewing in my gaiwan, I combine 2 infusions in my teacup, and I managed 3 very flavorful cups (that’s a total of 6 infusions) of this lovely tea!  At just $4.50 per ounce, that makes this tea an INCREDIBLE value!  I love it when tea is not only tasty but affordable!

Yunnan Golden Buds from Life In Teacup

Tea Type: Black Tea

Where To Buy: Life In Teacup

Product Description:
Production Year – 2010 – Production Season – Spring – Production Region Yunnan Style Pack Size 1 oz. (28g pack) Price per unit $7.99 Product #4hdh

Tasters Review:

Yunnan Golden Buds from Life In Teacup are some of the most lovely Yunnan Golden Bud-type leaves I have ever seen…darned-near-perfect PERFECT I’d say!

This infuses to a masculine-brown.  The taste is smooth but sweet and a true black tea.  It’s a medium to a medium-strong type taste and is very pure and clean with a juicy after-taste.

This is very good both hot and cold!  Another winner from Life In Teacup!

Taiwan Cui Yu Green Jade High Mountain Oolong From Life In Teacup

Taiwan Cui Yu Green Jade High Mountain OolongLeaf Type: Oolong

Where To Buy: Life In Teacup

Product Description:

One of the “greenest” oolong, with leaf color and tea taste close to green tea. This tea was produced from high mountain region of Nantou, Taiwan, in spring 2009. It has very refreshing floral fragrance.

Brewing method:
1a. Oolong, ball-shaped dry tea leaves

  • Vessel: gaiwan or small teapot
  • Water temperature: newly boiled water (above 95 °C or 203 °F)
  • Amount of leaves: 5 gram for every 120ml total volume (Or reduce the amount to 3 gram for some heavy oxidation and/or heavy roast products)
  • Warm-up infusion: pour hot water in the vessel, and immediately drain it. Wait for about 1min. before starting the next infusion.
  • Time for each of the first 3 infusions (after warm-up): 20sec. (Or reduce the infusion time to 10-15sec. for some heavy oxidation and/or heavy roast products)
  • Extend infusion time based on taste for later infusions. Most oolong tea can well last for at least 5-7 infusions.

1d. Oolong, Go easy…
(recommended if you would like to go easy; not recommended if the tea is expensive to you and you expect very strong flavor in every sip.)

  • Vessel: gaiwan or use half volume of your mug
  • Water temperature: (same as “1a”) newly boiled water (around 95 °C or 203 °F)
  • Amount of leaves:
    o ball-shaped oolong: 5-10 grains of dry tea leaves
    o stripe-shaped oolong: 5-8 whole leaves
  • Steep time: 1-2 minutes
  • Re-steep: when there is 1/3 liquor left in the vessel, add hot water to re-steep.

Tasters Review:

Recently I have been fortunate enough to try a few of teas from Life In Teacup and they are lovely!  Taiwan Cui Yu Green Jade High Mountain Oolong From Life In Teacup surely follows suit!

Post infusion color is a bright yellow-green.  The taste is rich and buttery yet seemed to mellow me out and made me feel very relaxed.  It has a faint aroma but it makes up in color and taste.  This is a Oolong that is down-right tasty and I am eager to try it again!

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