taiwan

Tao Tea Ginseng Oolong

Name: Tao Tea Leaf Ginseng Oolong
Style: Flavoured Oolong
From: Taiwan

1tsp, 95°C Water, 2 min

This brews a pale yellow with sightly darker, golden centre.

The nose hits you first with honey and floral before moving into a creamy herbal/grassy note.

The tea is very thick and mouthcoating, it gives a nice tactile sensation in the mouth (Ok, that’s very strange sounding when I write it down). Flavourwise it’s similar to the aroma, the ginseng notes of earthy, grassy herbs reach you first, with honeyed, floral notes taking over after. The tea has a nice cooling finish, not so much a flavour as a feeling.

The tea is nicely balanced between flavours from the oolong and ginseng, I’ve had one in the past which was a ginseng bomb and it wasn’t very appealing. Maybe it’s just me today but this tea has some… oomph to it that brings more that just flavour and aroma when I’m drinking it. It’s hard to explain, I’m probably a bit crazy, it’s ok.

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Tao Tea Coconut Oolong

Name: Tao Tea Leaf Coconut Oolong
Style: Flavoured Oolong
From: Taiwan

1tsp, 95°C Water, 2 min

This brews a pale gold with a grey rim to it.

The nose on the tea is strongly coconut cream, with a touch of floral to it. It smells a touch sun tan lotiony, in a good way.

It’s a bit thin compared to some other Oolongs I’ve had. The Oolong flavours of honey and flowers come through a lot stronger on the palate with the coconut coming through on the finish.

It tastes like Oolong and coconut put together. There’s nothign overwhelming, it doesn’t taste like suntan lotion either. Definitely a winner for flavoured teas. It also makes a fantastic cold brewed iced tea.

Jibian Oolong (?)

This was a random sample I acquired, therewas no English on the package beyond Jibian Oolong. So yeah, mystery oolong!

Name: Jibian Oolong
Style: Oolong
From: Taiwan?

5g, 90°C Water, 1 min + rinse

This brews a dark amber with hints of orange.

There’s a lot going on with the nose here; honey, melon, roasted nuts and a bit of flowers.

The tea has a touch of sweetness to it and coats the mouth nicely. There’s a lot more floral and honey notes on the palate that stay from start to finish. The melon flavours poke through somewhere in the middle accompanied by a bit of roastiness.

This one is quite delicious, it has a nice flavour balance with nothing overwhelming other flavours. I kind of wish I knew what it was, as I’d buy it again, if it was the right price, as a basic no frills oolong.

Dong Ding – Mrs Lin – Charcoal Fired

I’m getting back into the swing of things now! This one’s actually being completely written with the drink in front of me, not just some tasting notes that sort of make sense. One thing I love about Camellia Sinensis is that they like to go and meet the producers of the tea they buy. They have 3 different Dong Ding Oolongs right now, each from a different (named) producer!

Name: Charcoal fired Dong Ding – Mrs Lin
Style: Oolong
From: Taiwan

Steeping Info: Rinse + 4 minutes, 95°C water, 1 tsp.

Colour: Honey coloured with a bit of a green hue to it.
Aroma: Not too much going on except cornnuts and some feint flowers.
Taste: Mouthcoating and creamy with no tannins to be found. Starts off with the same roasted corn/cornnut flavour as on the nose then gets both fruity and floral (it’s really hard to pin things down further than that… Peach blossoms? What do peach blossoms smell and taste like? Anyone?) before finishing pretty butterscotchy.

Overall: It really has a lot of things going for it, I was a bit concerned about the charcoal roasting when I bought it. I wasn’t sure if it was going to be overly strong, but it’s very subtle and makes the flavours seem roasted instead of burnt ones.  There’s a bunch of different layers, some of which I still can’t pin down very well.

Buy: http://camellia-sinensis.com/en/dong-ding-mme-lin-cuisson-au-charbon
Price: $9/25g

What they say:
From the famous mountain Ding Dong and cooked in the traditional way on charcoal, this tea has a nice mix of dark leaves. Its fragrance is rich and diverse and evokes the typical aromatic complexity of wulong, having notes that span toasted grains to flowers. Its liquor is full and soft, and the fruity finish (plum) is sweet and spicy.

Toufen 1963

Part of the giant tea order I made a month or so ago, I have all of that to review (minus the sample I already reviewed), PLUS the other order I made a couple weeks ago (because half off tea for 1 day only just screams my name)… So this is a 51 year old aged tea, let’s see how graceful it is in its approach to senior citizenship.

Name: Toufen 1963
Style: Aged Oolong
From: NW Taiwan

Steeping info: Rinsed then 3.5 minutes @ 95°C, 1 teaspoon.

Appearance:  Pours a dark red-brown with a yellow/green brown edge.
Aroma: Well, this is something. It’s a lot of dirt, leaves, wet leather. Most people would think that’s a bad thing, I say it’s a wonderful thing!
Taste: Absolutely no tannins (I’m sure that’s how entirely from the rinse), and a very creamy mouthfeel. Taste is very minerally, not quite metallic though, with some leather, prune and other dried fruit.

Overall: Pretty delicious. Would I order it again? Probably not, it isn’t the cheapest thing in the world. I’m glad I tried it though, but next time I’ll get something of a slightly more modern vintage…

From: http://camellia-sinensis.com/en/toufen-1963
Price: $9.50/10g

What They Say:
This antiquity from the north west of Taiwan, with leaves burnished by time, releases after rinsing aromas of undergrowth and leather. Its dark reddish-brown liquor is  mineral and full tasting, embellished with notes of tobacco, dried fruit and beetroot. Its peppery finish also evokes the fragrance of roasted coffee. A warm and memorable tea to taste for tapping into the present moment.