I don’t know much about osmanthus, but I definitely know that I love the scent of it. This oolong’s aroma is an interesting mixture of sweet cream, floral, and gao shan character. The strength of the osmanthus mainly remains in the aromas, primarily adding mouthfeel and aftertaste when it comes to the liquor, which I appreciate. The Ali Shan leaves are nice and I am always happy when added flavors refrain from overpowering the natural components of the leaves.
So, as far as flavored teas go, this one is quite excellent. Great body, nice flavor profile with classic high mountain flavor and just enough added florals to round out the character. While the osmanthus is a little too potent in the wet leaf scent and the aroma trapped under the gaiwan lid, the balance in the liquor is just right. I am perhaps most pleased with this tea’s progression through steeps. Neither the osmanthus or the Ali Shan flavors “win out” at any point during the session, instead gradually rising and falling together. Many times with some jasmine green specimens, for example, it seems as though I am drinking two overlapping teas during one session, as the floral aspect is very strong in the beginning, while the actual tea’s characteristics take a few steeps to shine through. Not so with this tea.