Tea garden of red oolong is located in Luye, Taidong, Taiwan. The altitude is about 1000m a.s.l. Tea garden gets sun shine only in the morning whereas from the afternoon onwards, the entire tea garden is covered by a thick fog. Due to the fog and higher altitude, the taste and flavor of the tea is very thick and it gives a very smooth drinking feeling.
Tea leaf consists of 1 bud and 2 leaves. The size of twig is smaller which indicates an early batch of harvesting. Crafted by skilled farmers, this oolong was skillfully hand-plucked and slowly batch-roasted over a bamboo charcoal pit for an unsurpassed flavour and aroma. The aroma of the dry leaves is nutty and slightly smokey. The liquor of the tea is a beautiful red, and the flavor is sweet with notes of caramel and dried fruit.
When infused, the aroma was at once spicy then fruity, followed by a residual presence of wheat fields. This tea presents toasted grain-type elements layered on top of a deep, penetrating spicy-sweetness that reminds me of sweet, highly perfumed, oily spices like cinnamon or clove in both the flavor and aroma. Scents of chestnuts, dried wood and green forest growth give way to smooth, mellow flavours of spearmint, dry lemongrass and some minerality. The finish is roasty with a distinct mint-chocolate note. The mouthfeel of the infused tea liquor is moderately thick and smooth, and the “hui gan” , or sweet aftertaste that comes after the initial bittersweet flavor fades, is beautifully sweet, spicy, and quite long lasting.
Like all great oolongs, this tea reinfuses with ease. Red oolong is a heavily roasted and deeply oxidized oolong tea, it is ideal for further aging.
Brewing Guide: We highly recommend brewing this Oolong gongfu style to appreciate its many layers of flavor. Red oolong may be prepared in a regular teapot, an Yixing clay pot, or in individual cups. Use about 1 tsp. per cup (8 oz.) of water heated to 80-90°C (176-194°F). Infuse for 2-3 minutes and pour off. The leaves may be resteeped 5-7 times.
Red oolong could be brewed with cold water. Different from using regular boilling water to make a cup of tea, cold brew is a mwthod adopting cold water to brew the tea. It is suggested to use mineral water or purified water, one portion of dry leaves with 100 portions of water, then stored in refridgerator for 4-12 hours. Normally, keep the tea in cold water for 4 hours will get the same result as brewing it with boilling water for 5 minutes. Cold brew is a good way to make the liquor sweeter while prevent tannin and caffeine from the tea.