This is my first milk oolong. Thanks Stephanie!
I first tried this gong fu style. ½ tsp for 4 oz at 195f. The dry leaf smells creamy and sweet. After a quick rinse and a 20 second steep, the first cup smells the same as the dry leaf. The tightly rolled leaf has started to unfurl. There’s a creamy fruitiness in the smell of the brewed leaf. I can’t place it; pit fruit maybe? The creaminess of the tea hits right up front in the sip, followed by a green flavor…parsley or spinach maybe?… and a creamy finish.
Second steep, 25 seconds. Yup, creamed spinach. Well, cream and spinach. I’ve never had actual creamed spinach, so I can only guess what that tastes like.
Third steep, 45 seconds. This steep is more green, less cream. Parsley? Other than the creaminess, this tastes more like a green than an oolong.
Fourth steep, 1 min. Fifth steep, 1 min 30 seconds. Sixth steep, 2 mins. All taste basically the same – creamy and vegetal.
Seventh steep, 2 mins 30 seconds. A bit of toffee comes out.
Eighth steep, 4 mins 30 seconds. Starting to lose flavor. A touch of creaminess, a hint of toffee, and a lingering green flavor that I’m calling spinach right now. The leaves are gorgeous. Big, brownish-green, with slightly jagged edges.
I also tried this Western style: 1 tsp/8oz, 197f, 5 mins 30 seconds. The taste was about the same as I got from the gong fu brewing. Creamy, slightly sweet, vegetal. I don’t know that I have a preference between the two brewing methods for this tea, except that Western style takes less effort/overall time.
I haven’t decided how I feel about this tea. The creaminess was weird at first but grew on me after a while. I think I need to try a few more milk oolongs before I can meaningfully rate this one.