Fong Mong asked me if I liked dark oolongs before they sent this. I told them sure (I didn’t really know). Right now I am hoping it was not a mistake. I do love Yamamotoyama and Foo Joy Wuyi oolongs in bag form so I am not really too concerned.
I used half the six gram sample for my tasting. The leaf is rolled tight but not as tiny as the blue jade. It has a light smoked aroma. I held the first steep to 3 minutes. The liquid is clear and dark yellow. The wet leaf is dark green and smells ominously charcoal smoked.
The sip – interesting! Not nearly as roasted as it smells. It actually impressed me as more green than smoked. The taste has almost a honey like quality about it. The aftertaste has a neat cooling thing going on like mint or menthol but it is not in the taste. It is just a sensation. As the cup cools the sip becomes a bit creamy.
On cup two, also at 3 minutes, the leaf has relaxed enough to reveal some stems. How were they able to roll 2” long stems into those tiny little pellets? I am noticing the oolong floral notes coming through especially in the aftertaste.
The third cup @ 4 minutes is milder as the flavor is fading. The cooling sensation is actually more noticeable at this point.
There is some resemblance between this and the bagged Wuyi oolongs I have enjoyed in the past. Really, they are only a shadow of what is going on in this tea. It is as if you took the flavor knife and lopped off the ends, then cut what was left in half and discarded the bright happy side of the flavor. I say that, all the while admitting I like those bagged teas. Now that I know what I am missing, I am not as likely to rush into restocking them. I have no idea if this is a good quality example of this type tea. What I do know is I think it is really good.
It brings up a question in my mind. Why do I like the roasted/smoked taste in greens and oolongs but not so much in black teas? I have no answer other than preconceived ideas of how I expect a tea to taste.