So far the formosa oolongs I’ve tried are notable for what they have in common — that sweet roasted floral-fruit taste — rather than their differences, which have been extremely slight. This is a good-quality tea, but no revelation. Like Upton’s formosa fine grade, the leaves are chopped (the other formosa oolongs had rolled leaves, but the taste hardly varied, so I’m unclear how they decide on the style or what effect it’s supposed to have) and good for multiple steepings. I was a bit surprised that H&S’s instructions for the tea were to use boiling water and steep it for 5 minutes, but I tried it and it was fine.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Happiness Is:
green tea
black tea
lots and lots of oolong!
vanilla things

Not Really My Style:
spices (except for ginger. ginger rocks)
chai (because, you know, the spices)
rooibos (I don’t get it. Everyone seems psyched for it. Not me).
those smoky teas, like lapsang souchong, though once in a while I’ll need something really strong and then I like them.

Bergamot lives in a weird little category of its own. Sometimes it’s very good. Sometimes it’s very bad. I don’t know why my feelings toward it are always in flux, though the brand is a factor to some extent. Tea companies seem to have vastly different opinions about how to make earl grey.


gypsy status



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