Gong Fu Tea Shop
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Recent Tasting Notes
I have bought this tea a couple of times from Gong Fu, and really enjoy it. I would have to call it the French Roast of oolongs, for I really cannot imagine a more heavily baked tea. The appearance of the dry leaf is really quite different from others. They are very dark, almost carmelized-looking rolled nuggets of tea leaves. I don’t know if tea leaves carmelize, so let’s leave it as a waxy appearance. No matter how many times you infuse it, the leaves do not really open up fully like other oolongs; rather they hold their crumpled shape throughout infusing. Evidently, these leaves’ agony was on the roasting rack. Where the tea really shines for me is during the second and third infusions, where the chocolate and coffee notes really come out. For some reason, I usually choose to prepare this in my Chatsford teapot like I would a black tea. I will have to try it in a gaiwan. I usually prepare it as directed 205 for three minutes.
When I first tasted this tea I didn’t know what to think. It was full bodied with a viscosity due to its limited processing. It is now in my top 5 and I am always amazed at the beauty of this tea. One step down from matcha, this tea is perfect on a day in March or April as we prepare our minds for the onset of Spring. If you haven’t tried this tea, you must!
I love starting out with this tea on winter mornings. It is a bold style that remains restrained enough not to overwhelm your taste buds with those characteristic astringent tannins. For those of you who feel the tannins are still too much, add milk. There is a subtle smokiness in this tea alongside an element of autumn grass. Unique quality for an english breakfast. I dig it.
A most unusual tea. The tannins are all but a memory here. I suppose this is partly why it is a tribute tea. The beverage seems very mellow with a hefty load of earthiness on the palate. The infusion is densely brown, almost the color of coffee. Not a ton of character in the tea but I am somewhat new to pu-erh style so I am going to have to revisit it. Maybe I will notice a subtlety I missed the first go round. It is a tea that comforts the stomach.
This is a subtle style of black tea that hails from an oolong dominated region yet is varietally of the Indian Assam strain. It is worth mentioning because this tea embodies much of the Assam boldness with a subdued tannic smokiness and light floral note characteristic of oolong. I will have to come back to this tea for another cupping before going into much more detail. Intriguing and very much worth the time!
This has a truly unique bouquet and mouthfeel in the oolong family. It delivers a robust aromas of orchid, coconut and fresh herbs. The mouthfeel lives up to the name with a round and smooth viscosity. I believe this tea is a good introductory tea to people who are just acquainting themselves with oolong. Ultimately, it is a style of tea that is boisterous and very easy to drink. The connoisseurs may find it too straight forward. I tend to enjoy this tea in the morning but move on to something more subtle by afternoon such as Oriental Beauty or Baozhongs.