High Mountain Oolong/Qi Aerista

This just might be the first tea I have ever tried from Qi Aerista. More specifically, High Mountain Oolong from Qi Aerista, that is.

First I want to talk about their website. It’s pretty fantastic when it comes to individual information about each one of their teas and products. Very few companies describe the process of each tea to the degree that Qi Aerista did. With this oolong, they said it went thru the traditional process, but went one further to describe it step-by-step which included Plucking, Withering, Bruising, Kill-green/Fixation, Rolling & Shaping, and Drying & Roasting with special emphasis on the ‘bruising’. Bruising is a critical phase as it involves rounds of shaking and resting of the leaves to obtain the right amount oxidation that delivers the optimal flavor and aroma.

Going beyond the process, they told more secrets of this tea including the tea type being a Semi-oxidized Oolong and what other names it could go by which were Xiyan Oolong and West Rock Oolong. Cultivar was listed as Local oolong cultivar and the region it hails from is Dapu County, Guangdong Province, China.

What I find even more exciting is that the age of the plant in which this tea came from was over 60 years old and grew at an altitude of 1250m/4100ft from their April 2017 harvest.

I took about 2 or more teaspoons of this loose leaf and infused for about 3 minutes. It was the perfect cuppa outcome! It offered a gentle roasted flavor but it was also sweet. Smooth, crisp, and a bit nutty on the end sip! A really lovely flavor. I can’t want for another cup! Next time you are looking for a tea to buy or try – make sure you look this one up!


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Qi Aerista

Description

This tea is no longer on the website but click below for more information regarding Qi Aerista’s offerings.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Nepal Guranse Estate Organic Oolong Tea/Simpson and Vail

I have been wanting to write this review for quite a few weeks. It was THAT memorable. This Nepal Guranse Estate Oolong from Simpson & Vail is organic and from a pretty neat estate.

When it comes to the leaves of this Oolong they hail from South Asia…bordered by China and India…you guessed it…the leaves are from Nepal! Nepal is home to some of the largest mountains in the world, including Mount Everest which is the highest point anywhere on Earth. Nepal is comprised of 75 districts, one of which is the district of Dhankuta. Dhankuta is located in the Koshi hill Zone in eastern Nepal. It borders the Darjeeling region of West Bengal, India, and enjoys the same soil and climatic conditions as Darjeeling.

The Guranse Tea Estate has planted pure young and vibrant clonal plants all selected to make high quality teas. They believe in producing only the best, therefore, their tea goes through a series of careful processes before it is packed and finally ends up in your cup for an entirely new experience of health and vitality.

Guranse is NASAA organic certified, JAS certified, and ISO 22000- 2005 certified. 95 % of the workers are women and the Company pays for several of the worker’s children’s education and pays for the salary of teachers at the village school. How great is that? The company also supports an older people’s home that is nearby, by providing meals, rations, blankets, and more.

When I read on the S&V website that Guranse Tea was more than just a beverage – I knew I had to dig deeper into this estate!

As for the sight, touch, taste, and smell of this tea…he strong brown, twisted, tippy leaves brew into a more mellow amber cup with a sweet, mild taste and a delicate fruity sniff and taste. The oolong itself is lightly rolled, semi fermented, and hand sorted!

This Oolong was pretty wonderful and learning about the estate and people behind it made me enjoy my cup even more!


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type: Oolong

Where to Buy:  Simpson and Vail

Description

This tea is no longer available but click below for teas that are.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Bai Mu Dan Oolong / Verdant

Death has a way of making a nice cup of tea seem like a hug. I’m at peace and yet it still hurts.

Each sip is like a comforting hug. This silky mouthfeel is like a good friend wrapping you in a soft, warm blanket of encouragement. This unusual varietal has characteristics of it’s white counterpart while retaining the unique minerality of an oolong. It has the astringency that gives the slight feeling of one that had just licked a rock. A smooth, wet rock. Perhaps this rock was in a flower field.

A field of summer flowers comes to mind in the aftertaste. Roasted flavors dominate most of the flavor wheel for this one. Strange vanilla tones also appear if you let your palette sit without tea for a bit and then you swish it around. How unique! Tea, at least for me, has a wonderful way of lifting ones spirits.


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type: Oolong

Where to Buy: Verdant Tea

Description:

You might recognize “Bai Mudan” as a white tea. This intriguing harvest is Da Bai cultivar planted in Wuyishan and picked with the classic Bai Mudan mix of leaf and smaller buds, but finished as a roasted oolong. The result is fascinating – a tea with the buddy mouth-filling textural thrill of a traditional Fuding Bai Mudan, but with the minerality and deep roasted flavor of a classic Wuyi Oolong. The aromatics are full of orange zest and licorice root. The first infusions have a bright white tea quality with earthier burdock undertones and coriander spice. Later steepings are rich and aromatic like floral ginger, with notes of juicy plum.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

(Pure Indulgence) Lavender Oolong/Palais des Thés

Palais des Thés doesn’t get over the top with the explanation or product description of this one. Not because it isn’t wonderful but because it IS wonderful and they don’t need to go on and on about it.

Pure Indulgence Lavender from Palais des Thés. Simply put is…the pure sensation of lavender with tea.

This is an Oolong Tea with Lavender. It’s doesn’t get more straight forward than that, folks!

The sweet Oolong used in this offering hails from China and is combined with that stereotypical flower that ‘girly girls’ and ‘grandmas’ adore. I, for one, am neither of those types but I have to give credit where credit is due and say this one really surprised me. There was ‘just enough’ of the flower aroma and flavor to be noticeable and take this tea to the next level but it wasn’t overly loud about it either.

This is a classy tea. It’s comforting and warm. It doesn’t leave a bitter floral aftertaste like some flowery flavored tea tend to and for that I’m extremely grateful!

Don’t assume you will know what this tastes like. Try it before you label it. This isn’t your Grandmothers lavender! This is something really special. It should be shared and celebrated!


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Palais des Thés

Description

The pure sensation of lavender with tea.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Shi Zuo Oolong Tea/Tea From Taiwan

(Insert Music Bed HERE)…The best part of waking up…is dancing leaves in your cup! Okay, I’m just having a little fun with spoof jingles and at the same totally showing my age. Regardless, it was the first thing that came to mind when I was infusing this tea. Shi Zuo Oolong from Tea From Taiwan…it’s where it’s AT!

Don’t let the gentle, pale yellow liquor tea color fool you! What it lacks in a bolder, more vibrant color…it makes up for in beautiful aroma and flavor!

It’s very fresh, clean, buttery, and sweet when it comes to taste. As for aroma it reminded me of sweet, sugar snap peas with a hint of raisin. The buttery texture of the sip lingers long after the sip and makes you crave more.

This is definitely one of the more interesting and flavorful Oolongs I have sampled in a while. I think it would pair well with a nice savory veggies and rice dish, too! YUM!


Want to Know More About This Tea?

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Tea From Taiwan

Description

Shi Zuo oolong tea (wu long tea) is grown in the Shi Zuo (Stone Table) area of Alishan (Mount Ali). At an altitude of 1300 meters, Shi Zuo has a cool, moist climate that is ideal for growing tea.

Shi Zuo oolong tea is hand picked and hand processed in the traditional manner of Taiwanese High Mountain oolongs. The processing results in ball-shaped tea pellets which consist of two or three leaves and a bud. These pellets open up during brewing to release the full flavor of the tea.

In order to experience the full potential of this tea, we recommend brewing it Gong Fu style. This method of brewing brings out the sweetness and complex undertones that mark this tea as one of the best that Taiwan has to offer.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!