Leaf Type: Oolong
Where To Buy: Fong Mong Tea
Lishan High Mountain Oolong Tea is one of the most unique and highest quality Oolong. Grown in the Li Mountains of Taiwan, this tea is harvested at the elevation of 1200 meters in an isolated area. Due to the cold weather and relatively harsh environments, the plants grow at a very slow rate and in small quantity. The tea is either harvested during the winter or summer and sometimes only once during the entire year. After the harvest, the leaves are carefully handled and aerated during the long ride to the nearest tea maker. Despite the difficult growing conditions, the leaves are selected as the highest quality of Oolong.
Learn more about this tea here.
I’m revisiting this tea – kind of. This is a whole new year, and this Lishan High Mountain Oolong Tea from Fong Mong Tea is from a whole new harvest!
And not surprisingly, this is amazing.
Not surprising because: 1) All the teas that I’ve tried from Fong Mong thus far have been good, and 2) I love LiShan Oolong teas!
I brewed this LiShan in my gaiwan, and the first five infusions (following a 15 second rinse) were combined into one cup, specifically, my Yixing mug that I have just for LiShan Oolongs! Yeah, I love ’em that much!
The first cup is amazing: buttery, silky-soft texture, floral, distant notes of fruit, and a touch of vegetal undertones. It is deliciously sweet, almost a sugary sweetness that melds in a lovely way with the exotic floral tones. I like that these floral notes are not sharp, they are as soft as the texture, they taste almost “fluffy.”
The buttery notes … well, I almost typed “creamy” instead of buttery, because they taste like something in between butter and sweet cream, but I decided that it had more of a buttery flavor than that of sweet cream, so I went with buttery instead. That is to say that these creamy/buttery notes are not overly sweet to the point where they might be thought of as cloying, instead, they are like something that’s between sweet and savory, with just a few steps over toward the sweeter side than to the savory.
It’s quite a luscious tea to sip, it feels luxurious on the palate as it glides softly over it. It tastes very creamy and light and sweet. So good!
My second cup (infusions 6 – 10) was just as lovely as the first! It is also sweet, creamy and delicately luxurious with its notes of cream, flower and hints of vegetation and fruit. I didn’t notice so much of a distinct buttery note this time, though, it just tasted creamy and soft, like something that had been flavored with vanilla, but without a distinguished vanilla note.
The flower is just a tad sharper in this cup than it was in the first cup, and I think that this may be because of the fact that some of those creamy/buttery elements are not as apparent in this cup. But I like the sharpness here, it seems to bring the floral notes more into focus for me, while with the first cup, they were soft and fuzzy, almost like a daydream about flowers. Here I taste notes that evoke clear thoughts of orchid.
A really beautiful LiShan. I loved every single sip of it. It would be difficult for me to choose which cup I liked better (the first or the second!) but I will say this: the flavor of this tea is so exquisite that you really should take this for as many infusions that you can get out of it! It’s worth the effort.