Leaf Type: Tieguanyin Oolong
Where to Buy: Verdant Tea
A rich warming Tieguanyin with chocolate barley notes and traditional creamy floral aftertastes. . . .
The early steepings of this tea are surprisingly more delicate than the aroma would imply. There are subtle notes of lime and the thick saffron qualities of a green Tieguanyin. The mouthfeel is buttery like flaky pastry with a slow nuanced build-up of warm caramel notes. A velvety texture starts to come through with orchid-like floral undertones, and sweetness that extends long into the aftertaste.
The early steepings use the deep caramel qualities that the aging and roasting process introduce to truly accentuate everything that is wonderful about green Tieguanyin. The later steepings move into new territory with warming sensations particularly suited to cooler weather. The chocolate notes of the aroma come through as flavor like thick creamy Italian hot chocolate that unfolds into a warm in the chest like that of a great red wine.
Notes of puffed rice and barley start to build up and act as a contrast to the lingering floral qualities. The alternation between deep warming sensations and tingling florals creates an intriguing mouth watering juiciness. This is a very satisfying brew that balances the traditional charcoal-roasted quality of Anxi Tieguanyin with the best elements of the new greener style of processing.
Learn more about this tea here.
This is a body and soul warming temptation of a tea. It delights the taste buds but also the mind in its calming and wonderful way. This is one of those teas who’s layers are complex yet not trying to evade your senses. Each and every element of this tea comes forward and presents itself to you and does not make you work to figure it out. The layers of the flavor within this tea are so delightful and one at a time they evolve, sometimes melding together, other times, standing alone, but each flavor in the profile provided by Verdant Tea is noticeable without any effort.
At first it is lightly smoky and roasty, a well done toast taste, the barley gives it a full mouthfeel and makes you feel you are drinking something good for you like a hardy warm breakfast cereal! But then it becomes caramelized in your mouth like a french dessert. Just then you will find that the light lime zest comes forward and does a gentle sweep of your palate to cleanse it for the next layer of flavor to come but before that hits your taste buds you get a quick tease by the flavor of saffron and just as you are thinking “oh please give me more saffron” the floral notes come dancing onto your taste buds leaving this lovely delicate yet intoxicating lingering flavor of orchid!
The result – a taste that is robust and toasty yet very fresh and springy as well. This is one of those tea profiles that could do well any month of the year as it makes you feel warm and cozy yet wakes you up with those fresh salad like notes of spring and summer.
The after taste is mostly of a roasted toasted oolong however when you breath in with your mouth open you get that fresh spring like flavor with the floral notes dancing about. Leaving you thinking your breath must certainly smell like flowers haha. While this is a roasted Tieguanyin I can’t help but think about country roads lined with wildflowers and the warm sunshine all about wide open fields so if this would be more of a “winter” tea it sure would make you feel like its summer time so that is not a bad thing at all!
This tea is exquisite! I love it and I am a huge fan of oolongs but honestly I feel that many people, even perhaps those who are not oolong fans really should try!
I really enjoy that the notes are so easily to distinguish! Sometimes “complex” teas can be complex to the taster. This one is not pretentious at all.
Now on the downside, currently Verdant Tea is sold out. It happened in the blink of an eye. On the positive note, Verdant is currently looking to refurnish their stash of this tea:
“We will be going to China to personally track down a larger cache of aged Tieguanyin in October. Stay tuned…”
I trust that this will happen! I have to, I want more! Verdant also now offers a Rewards Point System! Be sure to check that out and keep your eyes peeled for more of this tea so you can get some once it is back in! A tea like this won’t last long once restocked so be sure to get yours before I get it all.