Ti Quan Yin Oolong with Fresh Ginger and Turkish Rose from Aftelier Perfumed Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Aftelier Perfumed Teas

Product Description:

Monkey-picked Tie Guan Yin oolong tea starts with a roasted-rice aroma and finishes with a fruity taste, blending beautifully with the refined Turkish rose and warm fresh ginger. These rolled leaves provide up to 4 infusions.

Taster’s Review:

Oh … WOW!  This tea is absolutely dreamy!  Like some sort of euphoric dream that’s been scented with roses and ginger and even a hint of smoke.  That’s not only what it smells like, it’s what it tastes like too!

It’s amazing!  The sip begins with an introduction from the rose.  It is a sweet and almost intoxicating rose flavor that is not bitter, it’s not even what I would consider to be sharp.  It is a distinct rose flavor, but, at the same time, it is unlike the rose flavors that I’ve experienced in teas before.

Shortly after your palate has become acquainted with the rose, a smooth yet smoky note from the Ti Quan Yin Oolong comes through and imparts its silky texture.  The smoky flavor is not at all off-putting, rather, it seems to unite perfectly with the rose and the ginger to create a complete flavor experience.

The ginger comes in next, and this is not a strong, peppery kind of ginger, but rather, an almost sweet note of warm spice.  It doesn’t taste hot or spicy, just mildly warm and enchanting.  The sip finishes with a slightly drying astringency, and the aftertaste lingers with the perfumed flavor of rose and whispers of ginger.

This tea is absolutely lovely.  Words cannot even begin to adequately describe just how lovely it truly is!  It is a tea that must be experienced to appreciate fully.  What a delight!

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Honey Gold from East Pacific Tea Co.

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  East Pacific Tea Co.

Product Description:

Travel far away to the Fujian Province of China. Our Honey Gold Tea steeps a nice amber color and releases a captivating orchid scent. Serves great chilled, and will impress any connoisseur.

Taster’s Review:

A lovely Oolong.

Just as the description above suggests, the aroma is indeed captivating with its flowery notes.  I can also detect a somewhat woody fragrance to it, with notes of earth lingering in the background.

The sip begins with a woody flavor – oak, perhaps? – and finishes with a sweet, honey-esque smoothness.  There are faint hints of smoke that weave in and out throughout the sip, and a stronger fruit note that is somewhat peach-like.  There is also the slightest whisper of flower in the sip that reminds me of the air in my gramma’s backyard when the honeysuckles were in bloom.

I have come to expect exceptional quality when it comes to East Pacific Tea Company and this Oolong is certainly exceptional.  The flavor is deliciously complex and contemplative, with an aroma that enchants the spirit.  And the best part when it comes to East Pacific Tea’s high-quality Oolong teas?  They product multiple infusions – stretching the value of this fine tea.  What a delight!

Little Black Dress Pink Grapefruit from Teaquilibrium

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Teaquilibrium

Product Description

Teaquilibrium’s Pink Grapefruit is bold refreshing. The colorful combination of citrus and eucalyptus make LBD Pink Grapefruit delicious iced.

ingredients: oolong tea, apple pieces, carrot flakes, blackberry leaves, eucalyptus leaves, beetroot, hibiscus, lemon grass, natural flavor, freeze-dried tangerine pieces, orange slices.

Taster’s Review:

I’m really liking this blend!

After reading through the ingredients, I was a little worried about the combination of hibiscus and Oolong tea, I worried that the somewhat thick, syrupy nature of the hibiscus might interfere with the lovely texture of the Oolong, but, that didn’t happen here.  The hibiscus seems to do very little in this blend – thankfully – except for adding some color and perhaps a little tartness.

But the tartness in this case is quite welcome, because it compliments the tangy citrus flavors so well.  Even though there are several different components to this tea that contribute a citrus flavor, the dominant flavor is that of pink grapefruit. It is tart yet sweet and quite juicy tasting.

At first, I didn’t taste much of the eucalyptus in this, but as I continue to sip, I notice it slightly more.  It is still rather subtle.  It does add some definition to the grapefruit flavor, but, this definitely doesn’t taste like eucalyptus.  It tastes like grapefruit!

The Oolong flavor, by comparison, is a little muted.  Ordinarily, I might find fault with that, however, this is so remarkably tasty that its difficult to complain about the lack of Oolong taste.  This is definitely more of a tea for grapefruit lovers than it is for Oolong lovers, although Oolong lovers might find this a welcome departure from the usual.

Overall, I really enjoyed this cup.  Such a pleasant flavor that I find to be quite invigorating.  It has a very pleasing natural sweetness to it, so little to no additional sweetener is required, which is perfect for those of us who are trying to cut back on the sugar intake!  A great tea for an afternoon out with girlfriends!

Four Seasons from Tula Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Tula Teas

Product Description:

Si Ji Chun Wulong

Mr. Liu’s Garden

Dong Ding Mountain, Nantou, Taiwan
2010 Harvest

Our fantastically nuanced Four Seasons Oolong is from Dong Ding Mountain in Nantou, Taiwan. Four Seasons is a varietal developed in the 1980s.  This one was specially grown and handmade by a tea competition judge who is known for his tireless work in working with and developing new tea varietals that are naturally pest-resistant (to eliminate the use of pesticides) and adaptable to climate change.

Read more here

Taster’s Review:

The fragrance of the dry leaf is very enticing and beautiful.  It has a fantastic floral scent that reminds me a bit of a dew-drenched flower garden in the springtime just as the sun begins to warm the leaves and petals.  The aroma carries over to the brewed tea as well, making this a very inviting tea to sip.

And I am glad to accept that invitation, because this is truly a remarkable Oolong.  The flavor is delightfully complex with notes of creamy butter and flower, hints of vegetation and spice, and a delicious background of fruit-like flavors.

The sip begins softly with a whisper of creamy goodness, and then a sharp, sweet floral quality emerges.  All the while, I can taste the notes of crisp apple and a hint of plum.  The sip ends with a bit of cleansing astringency that leaves just enough of the spice notes and a tangy note of citrus on the palate to enjoy in the aftertaste.  It’s really a delicious cup.

This tea is aptly named, because all at once it has flavors that represent all four seasons:  Spring with its beautiful floral tones; Summer with a sweetness of sun-ripened fruit; autumn with a hint of nut and spice, and winter with its warm, comforting buttery notes.

I really enjoyed this Oolong.  Each infusion (I managed six from one measurement of leaves!) is very flavorful and unique in its own way, so please do yourself a favor and savor each infusion!  You’ll be happy you did!

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!

Almond Blossom Oolong Tea from Frontier Co-Op

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Frontier Co-Op

Product Description:

Bold-leafed Se Chung Chinese oolong blended with sliced almonds. Subtle, nutty almond flavor nuance combines with light smoky character of the oolong to yield delicious toasted notes.

Taster’s Review:

I reviewed this tea previously, and I think I like it now just as much as I liked it then, if not more!  It’s so tasty!  The sweet, nutty taste of almond melds so nicely with the natural fruit notes of the Oolong.

The Oolong base is a dark Se Chung Oolong – most Se Chung Oolong teas tend to be on the greener side, but this Se Chung looks and tastes as though it’s been charcoal fired because of its distinct smoky note.  The smoky note is not an overwhelming one, but it’s there.  I enjoy how the smoky undertones unite with the flavor of the almond – almost as if they were made for one another.

The almond flavor is sweet and nutty, but I can also taste a subtle bitter almond taste as well.  Overall a very pleasant cup of tea.

Bai Hao Oolong from TeaVert

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  TeaVert

Product Description:

Bai Hao is one of most renowned oolong teas and has natural fruity aromas with notes of peaches that produce a sweet and spring honey tasting bright-reddish orange tea liquor.

Taster’s Review:

This Oolong brews to a beautiful, bright amber color that is pleasantly fragrant.  Smelling a little of flower and of fruit, with just a hint of smoke in the distance, this tea is begging me to take a sip!

The sip begins with a bright introduction of peach-like flavor with very subtle floral notes weaving throughout.  About mid-sip, the palate is enveloped with a smooth sweetness that is honey-like in flavor.  It is about this time that I notice that the light yet silky mouthfeel.

I don’t notice a tremendous amount of astringency with this cup, however, I do notice enough to mention it.  It seems to softly polish the palate.  The aftertaste is sweet with a savory whisper of tangy/sour taste.

A delightfully complex Oolong!  I love this!

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