Leaf Type: Oolong
Where to Buy: Mandala Tea
This tea is a variation on a Taiwanese oolong named “Oriental Beauty”, utilizing large-leaf wild arbor Yunnan grown leaves. Nearly black leaves and silver tips impart a dark, sweet, wine-like flavor unto the water. Great no matter how you choose to brew it. This tea is quickly becoming a favorite in the tea thermos. It will keep well and develop new flavors over 2-3 years.
Learn more about this tea here.
This Yunnan Beauty Oolong Tea from Mandala Tea is a very forgiving tea! I accidentally brewed it at too high a temperature (boiling water!) because the sampling that I received said “Yunnan” and I saw leaves that were large and black and I thought … Alright, this is a black tea. So I brewed it the way I would normally brew a black Yunnan!
But the flavor is amazing, regardless of this oversight on my part. The flavor is sweet, rich, and has a lovely woody tone to it. The sweetness is fruity with notes of molasses. I also notice a toasty nutty taste to this as the tea starts to cool down a little bit … still warm, but, not quite as hot as it was when I started sipping. A hint of caramel also weaves its way through the sip every once in a while, too.
There is a very pleasing sweet wine-esque note, complete with a muscatel-ish taste that … had I tasted this without knowing what it was, I might have guessed a Darjeeling, or at least an Oolong that was grown in the Darjeeling region. After reading my Sister’s review (Azzrian!) of this tea, I see that she’s probably not going to agree with that last part, but, that’s OK. Since I brewed this tea “wrong” … perhaps the way I infused the tea brought out the flavors I’m experiencing.
The mouthfeel is silky smooth. This is one of those teas that I’d want to brew up a big pot of, and just keep sipping on all day long. The leaves will submit several infusions as well, so be sure to resteep!
A really delightful tea from Mandala, I’d recommend this to all Oolong enthusiasts out there – it’s a deliciously different Oolong that will delight your palate!