A slightly oolongated (sorry!) detour from the Golden Moon project while the water was at the oolong temp setting.
This tea is crowded. There are a lot of little oval cream colored flower buds in the sample, perhaps even more flowers than tea leaves. There’s a grainy looking greenish powder which I’m guessing is the lemon myrtle, but it looks as though it has been put through a pepper mill. The packet has a strong tart orange peel scent. I’m speculating that The Necessiteas ended up with a lot more orange ingredients than anticipated as their offerings are seeming heavy on the orange flavor lately.
The oolong must be pretty green as it delivers a fresh butter colored liquor that has a buttery aroma. There is also a suggestion of flowers, and a citrus note that seems out of place here. The citrus note worries me.
But I shouldn’t have worried, at least not too much. It is present in the taste of the tea, and it isn’t destructive or distracting as I had feared. Mostly, it’s effect is to steer the flavor of the tea away from the dominant buttery floral I would have expected from a green oolong and inject a more piquant flavor. Surprisingly, it’s pretty good.
I’m not sure what the lemon myrtle contributes, exactly. Maybe it’s what keeps the orange flavor under control. The jasmine flowers don’t seem to be contributing much either. There’s no identifiable jasmine note among the generic floral.
Second steep: 3 mins. More orange in the aroma and a powdery, perfumy quality as well that is vaguely lemony. Must be the myrtle. These two qualities dominate the flavor as well along with the generic floral and a sweetness on the back end with just a tiny bit of butter.
Third steep: 4 mins. Not terribly different from the last, except that the mouthfeel is less soft and feels more like water.
I’m actually quite surprised that this tastes as good as it does. If I wanted to have a green oolong, though, I’d be more likely to go for one that didn’t work so hard at muting the qualities in green oolongs that I really like (butteriness, creaminess, flowers) in favor of some other flavor(s). Still, if you’re not an oolong purist and/or are addicted to variety, this comes in a sample size so you can give it a try without a huge investment.