The dry leaf aroma is potent, creamy vanilla similar to French vanilla ice cream. The brewed tea aroma is more balanced between the vanilla and the green oolong. The vanilla scent has developed and is almost smoky. It reminds me of the way a toasted marshmallow smells once it’s been melted over a fire or vanilla baked goods hot from the oven.
The taste is scrumptious! Unfortunately, as the cup cools, there’s a new flavor developing that tastes a lot like cardboard. What is that? I never add sugar to green oolongs, but I think this one may need it. Hmm, I’m not sure if it helped or just made it worse. Floral, buttery, green oolong and creamy vanilla may just not be a good combo.
If I tell myself what I’m tasting is vanilla, then I can trick myself into thinking it’s pretty good. But if I sit and really try to figure out what the flavor is, I keep returning to cardboard. I did use extra leaf…was that where I went wrong? I think it’s mostly appearing in the aftertaste, which is why I find it so bothersome. I’m used to green oolongs having a lovely aftertaste.
And now I have a really bad case of the hiccups! I’ve been hiccupping for about 10 minutes straight and trying to sneak sips of tea in between loud outbursts. How annoying. Second steep for 4 minutes was still more vanilla/cardboard with a touch of oolong than oolong with a touch of vanilla. Oh well. I guess this beloved tea is just not my thing. I’ll see if my husband is interested in it.