Friday, January 30, 2009

Mt. Tayu Taiwan Oolong Winter Tea Super Grade

Tea: Mt. Tayu Taiwan Oolong Winter Tea Super Grade - 6340
Vendor: Lupicia USA
Source: Taizhong, Taiwan
Vendor Description: Rare winter-pluck oolong tea from Mt. Tayu, the highest tea plantation in the world. Clear scent with extremely clean flavor.

Leaf: The leaf for this tea is tightly rolled leaf balls. They exhibit hues of light to dark green in color, and have noticeable stem bits protruding as well.

1st Infusion Parameters: 5s rinse, 5g, 50z, 208F, 45s steep

1st Infusion: This tea produces a crystal clear light green infusion. It has a very strong yet clean floral aroma to it. It is sweet yet reminds me of a TKY in nature. It is not as strong as a TKY, but lighter and more floral. The flavor is light and clean. It is strongest on the center of the tongue. Although the flavor is quite light it is full bodied. The early half of the flavor matches the light floral taste quite nicely. It has a long lingering aftertaste best defined as a crisp oolong flavor.

2nd Infusion Parameters: 45s, 208F

2nd Infusion: This infusion ha da yellower green hue to it. The aroma was bolder, and less floral than the first. The flavor felt sharper, starting off strong and then tapering down the tongue. The flavor was stong, prominent, and very bold. This all happens rather quickly though as the flavor is veyr short lived. This infusion has a thick almost gummy aftertaste to it though.

3rd Infusion Parameters: 1 min, 208F

3rd Infusion: The floral aroma is gone in this infusion. What remains is a woody and leafy aroma. The flavor is lighter now, but the tea produces a very warming feeling. The flavor is focused on the edges of the tongue, with the feeling in the center of the tongue gone. There is still a certain richness to the flavor, and the floral taste tries to show itself, but only after slowly building up.

4th Infusion Parameters: 2min, 208F

4th Infusion: There is almost no aroma in the tea at all at this point. The tea tastes more akin to lightly colored water that is hinting at a flavor rather than showing one.

Used Leaf: The used leaf for this tea is very large, many of the leaves are still in bunches. The leaves themselves though are very soft and pliable.

Rating: 9/10

Conclusion: This tea was quite remarkable. it produced 3 very interesting cups, each different from the previous and tasty in their own right. The fourth was a bit of a letdown though, possibly with more promise with a longer soak. I don't remember the exact pricing of this tea, but I remember that it was on the pricier side of things, ~$1/g. Not an everyday tea, but definitely a good special occasion tea.

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