Leaf Type: Oolong
Where to Buy: Verdant Tea
NOTES: Caramel, Hazelnut, Elderberry, Custard, Honeydew, Orchid
Commandingly rich and creamy Wuyi oolong with lingering honey, orchid, and citrus caramel flavors. . . .
In opening the first bag of this tea, sealed in Wuyi, we were struck by the rich honey orchid smell of the dry leaves. Commanding and rich even before steeping, we knew we were in for a treat. As we poured boiling water over a pot of the long twisted Shui Jin Gui leaves, the steam carried the nostalgic aroma of tangy simmering orange caramel in a copper pot.
The first sip filled the whole palate in the same satisfying way as a bit of creme brulee complete with creamy custard and burnt caramel qualities. The burnt caramel depth transformed in the aftertaste to a lingering dark elderberry and earthy hazelnut profile.
Later steepings revealed the rocky mineral taste that tea cultivated on the rocky cliffs of Wuyi is known for. The mineral notes gave way to sweet cinnamon and the warmth of ginger without the spiciness. Towards the very end, the aftertaste transformed into an almost vegetal creamy green bean flavor with a lingering honeydew melon sweet orchid finish.
Learn more about this tea here.
What more can I say about Shui Jin Gui Wuyi from Verdant Tea that isn’t already in the description? Except perhaps that I personally want to order a huge supply of this so that I am never out of it! To me this tea is Legen…. wait for it….dary! Yes a How I Met Your Mother reference there. I apologize.
The first word that comes to mind while I sniff the dry leaf is sweet honey sugar succulent dripping with lust omgoodness! Okay that was more than one word, but seriously, I do love oolong, but some oolong are far superior to others and this is like the king of dessert-y oolong!
The caramel is perfection, the elderberry brightens the cup and makes it just a tiny bit “zippy” the honey note gives the tea its depth of character adding to the caramel aspect its like something sinful. There is even a spicy note within this tea. Then there is a wondrous floral note that just gracefully lingers all over the tongue, roof of mouth, back of mouth, its dancing around everywhere with sugar berries, caramelized honey, earthy elderberry, and the nuttiness of almond that also adds a slightly, but never bitter astringency, yet this tea remains so smooth all at the same time.
Oh yes the ever important and expected rock mineral is all over my palate as well as expected from a Wuyi Oolong. It blends completely with the floral aspect of this tea making me think of wildflowers blossoming along a creek bed. Wherever this creek bed is, I want to be right there!
This review is probably up at the top of Azzrian’s reviews that make no sense, but I stand by it, in all its confusing weirdness (the review not the tea). Shui Jin Gui Wuyi Oolong from Verdant Tea is stunning, there is no cohesive way to put it. Yet this tea, is very cohesive, all elements of this tea make perfect sense.