Monkey Picked Iron Goddess of Mercy

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
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Caffeine
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Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Jason
Average preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 45 sec

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15 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I’m giving this a bump because apparently this is the tea I crave when I want a toasty, darker oolong. It’s sweet and roasty but doesn’t make me think of cigar smoke. There’s a lot going on in...” Read full tasting note
    81
    aug3zimm 911 tasting notes
  • “After yesterday's day-long-pot-of-oolong extravaganza, I thought I'd try the same for this tea (I had a sample of it to finish up as well). And I have to say, it just makes me miss the Hawaiian...” Read full tasting note
    60
    laurenpressley 796 tasting notes
  • “I ordered this based on an existing impression of another "Monkey Picked Iron Goddess of Mercy" brand. That brand, the name of which escapes me to this day, was much lighter and sweeter in nature,...” Read full tasting note
    72
    unstable 10 tasting notes
  • “This is the first time I'm seeing these kinds of leaves rolled into a ball. It's quite amazing, actually, to see them unravel during the steeping process. I'm using my travel mug so I couldn't see...” Read full tasting note
    79
    raffi 53 tasting notes

From Samovar

Origin: South Fujian, China
Elevation: 750-900 meters above sea level.
Tea Bush Varietal: Anxi Hong Shin Tae Guan Yin.

Flavor Profile: Smooth bodied infusion with flavors of apricot and honey. The aroma is complex with accents of roasted nuts and caramel and hardy, woodsy notes.

Tea Story: One of our most popular oolongs at Samovar-and for good reason! This tea is an everyday staple and can be sipped casually at your desk (just toss a few leaves in your mug) or its perfect for creating an intimate ceremony. Legendarily picked by monkeys on the craggy Wuyi Mountain cliffs of Taiwan and named after Kuan Yin, the Goddess of compassion, this tea is stout, classic, and unforgettable.

While no monkeys were employed in the harvesting (or processing) of this tea, the title suggests the rarity of this oolong and the endorsement of its high grade by the tea master who made it.

The pronounced hardy and woodsy notes come through the plant’s struggle to survive through high-altitude heat and cold, and wind and fog. Watch this leaf as it slowly opens, releasing its nectar in each in each infusion. Have a tea tasting, and compare this tea to its big brother, Monkey King, and appreciate their similarities of these two.
To read about the history of Iron Goddess of Mercy Tea (a.k.a Tie Quan Yin or Ti Kuan Yin or Ti Kwan Yin) see our Extended Information.

Samovarian Poetry: Sip, penetrate your issues, and dissolve them. Kuan Yin’s classic elixir offering transcendence via the tea leaf.

Food Pairing: The deep, sweet, roasted flavor elements of this oolong pair marvelously with baked goods: like warm chocolate chip cookies, sweet bread, or apricot muffins. At the tea lounge we pair the Monkey Picked Iron Goddess with our Ginger Quinoa Waffle and our Mushroom Quiche.

About Samovar View company

Samovar's is dedicated to preserving the simplicity and integrity of the tea traditions and inspiring people to practice peace through drinking tea.

15 Tasting Notes

81
911 tasting notes

I’m giving this a bump because apparently this is the tea I crave when I want a toasty, darker oolong. It’s sweet and roasty but doesn’t make me think of cigar smoke. There’s a lot going on in this tea. I’ve already mentioned the sweet and roasty but there’s some stone fruit, some honey and even some raw-sugar-like notes. It’s woodsy and somewhat autumn-y with slight notes of rawness that remind me of Nilgiri but in a smooth way I can totally get behind. As the tea cools, the flavor continues to develop, getting more and more complex. I don’t normally go for darker oolongs but this one is worth being the exception.

ETA: Gave some of the second steep to the husband and he said that it reminded him a bit of genmaicha. And now that he says that, I can see it. It’s got a similar roasty, toasty, smooth taste.
5g/10oz

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec
thewaterbird

wow, you make this sound sooo goood!

Auggy

It is very tasty. I’m typically a green oolong girl but this one is good enough that I had to buy it!

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60
796 tasting notes

After yesterday’s day-long-pot-of-oolong extravaganza, I thought I’d try the same for this tea (I had a sample of it to finish up as well). And I have to say, it just makes me miss the Hawaiian Oolong. It’s good, and it’s clearly an oolong, but it just lacks a hint of the sweetness and butteriness that I came to expect after yesterday. I won’t be ordering more, though I am minutes away from caving and making another pot of the Hawaiian one.

(I could tell this tea wasn’t hitting the spot when I was tempted to make a cup of blueberry green Republic of Tea, which is perfectly fine, but not something that would normally compete with a Samovar tea for me.)

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72
10 tasting notes

I ordered this based on an existing impression of another “Monkey Picked Iron Goddess of Mercy” brand. That brand, the name of which escapes me to this day, was much lighter and sweeter in nature, that required a good 3 minutes of steeping just to unfurl, and more green-oriented(vegetal). This variation is very dark, roasted and smoky – concentrated even – leaning more to the black tea variety. It was after fiddling around with it that I found a “palatable” setting of only 30 seconds a steep at the White-Oolong temps. 45 seconds max on re-steeps. I’m usually wary of suggested steep times on tins, when they immediately say boiling. And for a such a long period, with a larger quantity of leaf(tablespoon vs my own teaspoon), this, to me at least, would be over-powering. I have yet to try that method, but if I do, I’ll be sure to update my findings, but I’m comfortable with what I have now. My way of brewing, the tea’s the smoky and roasted flavour does not become over-powering, but a more calming accentuated flavour, ideal for fireplace settings, and especially the winter season. I get the woodsey, smokey taste notes mentioned, and after a couple steeps, I definitely detect the apricot. Not as sweet as I had expected from another Monkey Picked, but still a good quality/price ratio oolong. Currently my “every day tea”.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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79
53 tasting notes

This is the first time I’m seeing these kinds of leaves rolled into a ball. It’s quite amazing, actually, to see them unravel during the steeping process. I’m using my travel mug so I couldn’t see through the cup to see it all in action, but amazingly the leaves started at the bottom of my infuser when dry, and ended up filling it up all the way to the top when the steeping was done.

The flavour profiles are pretty accurate to both what Samovar notes on their description and also to what people here have noted. Smooth, with roasted notes. I’m not too experienced with oolongs so I don’t have a point of reference to compare to, but this is a fairly darker flavour than I was expecting after seeing how light coloured the infusion was.

The complexities of this tea make it appealing. I’m enjoying this one. =)

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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77
100 tasting notes

Kinda smooth, kinda roasty. It’s got some umph and body to it. Slight bit of genmaicha hint to it which comes out a bit more with the second steep. Like the first steep more.

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100
7 tasting notes

By far my favorite Oolong tea. Great for multiple steeps. I absolutely LOVE it!

takgoti

I enjoy this one as well, but have you tried Four Seasons? I think it’s brilliant, but I’m out of it and it appears that they are, too. It’s driving me nuts!

Tobby Lunsford 

I haven’t tried the Four Seasons. I just order some ti kuan yin from Adagio, so once that is gone I will give the Four Seasons a try. Thanks

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80
4 tasting notes

Try steeping the first infusion (1 tablespoon) for 30 seconds @ 190 degrees with the lid on. Then throw this infusion away – it can be a bit funky.

At this point the leaves should have unfurled and it should smell quite rank (I mean that in a good way!)

The next infusion go for 30 seconds more and it will taste pretty good.

The second infusion for 45 seconds gets much more complex, a hint of sweetness but very malty and smooth. If you like dark teas I think you will tend to like this more than others.

Very complex tea – you could experiment with brew times and the amount of leaves and spend a good few hours coming up with new flavor profiles. I come back to this one a lot.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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92
10 tasting notes

I believe Samovar does a take on this tea where they soak it in honey over night. Absolutely delicious. As a black tea lover, this is a great oolong to add!

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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75
24 tasting notes

One of the very best Oolong teas I have had. I like to steep it for a full 3 min. Perfect for up to 4 Infusions and even a passable 5th.

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75
1 tasting notes

Love it, keep it at work to drink instead of coffee

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