Tea type
Oolong Tea
Oolong Tea Leaves
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Edit tea info Last updated by sherapop
Average preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 45 sec 12 oz / 354 ml

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From The Tao of Tea

Grown at an altitude of 4800 feet and twenty miles from Darjeeling (the famous tea growing region of India), Kali Cha is one of the first authentic style oolongs from India. The region of Kurseong “The Land of White Orchids" has several tea estates known to make light, fragrant black teas.

Smooth taste with a distinct, toasty cocoa aroma. It is a very forgiving tea for brewing and makes a delicious iced tea.

About The Tao of Tea View company

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10 Tasting Notes

6770 tasting notes

Thanks LiberTEAs!!!!

This is the darkest infused oolong I have ever had!!! Thumbs up for that difference!

The flavor at first sip reminds me of a paler coffee type taste. As it cools for a minute or two at room temp I can taste a bit more cocoa. Can can understand the DAWN comparison left by other tea lovers…that’s sort of neat, too!

Yup! As it continues to cool – naturally – the cocoa notes pop out a little more AND linger longer, too! Two thumbs up! This is a darling!


Bliss…….What is your opinion of Tao of Tea? It looks like a company with great teas! :))


I am a fan of their tea and their company! They have always been extremely nice, helpful, and I LOVE their selections! Two thumbs up from me, overall :)


Do you call when you order? I mean, I don’t know if they’re nice when I order online. :)) I love their Mei Li tea!


I have always done it via email :) – I have had lots of questions via email in the past and they have been quick to respond and very nice in their correspondence :)

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911 tasting notes

In her log, sophistre mentions that this is a bit of a Dawn taste-a-like, so I went into this cup thinking of my experience with Dawn which perhaps colors my perception a bit, but hey, it happens.

Smelling the dry leaves, there is a hint of cocoa. Not super-intense and a little more on the milk chocolate side of things than most cocoa-smelling teas but very nice. Once brewed, there is a bit of a rough, raw-ish smell that reminds me of a Nilgiri but not quite as raw or unpleasant. I suppose I could call this a slightly textured fresh note.

The taste is faintly cocoa-y on the front, a little rough and nicely solid. The idea of cocoa seems to hang around in my mouth after each sip and that’s kind of nice. The taste profile does remind me quite a bit of Dawn, as sophistre mentions, but less intense. Slurping the tea gives me a bit of smoke and a taste of something similar to burnt sugar and that is definitely very Dawn-like.

I’m not one of the ones looking for a Dawn replacement so I can’t say how nicely this would fill that hole but I find this tea quite enjoyable. It’s a little on the softer flavor intensity side of things which is something that I have been enjoying lately. But even though there are differences in intensity and smoothness, I would probably group this tea (lighter), Dawn (more intense) and my beloved Tan Yang from TeaSpring (smoother) in the same category.

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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4833 tasting notes

Like sophistre… I thought this was a black tea when I brewed it. It looks like a black tea. And there are even notes here that are quite similar to a black tea such as Dawn (I miss the Simple Leaf!) But, it is, in fact, an Oolong. A very forgiving Oolong that allowed me to steep it at a higher temperature (I thought it was a black, remember?) It still came out wonderful: rich and delicious with hints of cocoa and light florals.

Incredibly smooth, very little astringency. I am guessing it probably would have less astringency if brewed in the gaiwan as I would normally steep an Oolong. I shall have to try that before sending the rest of the tea to my SororiTea Sister.

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158 tasting notes

Hello, steepsterites!

I’m just getting back into the swing of things after a week of playing around town with my mother and stepsister, who were visiting. It was a wonderful, busy, walking-intensive, eating-intensive time, but it completely prevented me from drinking tea, so I am returning to this weird little hobby of mine with glee…and on a crazy note!

This morning, I was SURE that I had found another distributor for Dawn.

I got an order from Tao of Tea a few days ago that I hadn’t been able to tap into. There were teas in there that I was more interested in than this one (I couldn’t even really remember what this one was when I saw the name) but when I opened the package to sniff it and was hit with an intense whiff of dark cocoa, I had to switch things up.

In the interests of full disclosure I should say that I may (and almost definitely have), in my excitement, have screwed this cup up. I was so convinced from the smell that this was a black tea that I dumped 205 degree water on it without hesitation, only to discover in looking it up again that it’s an oolong…180-200 by their recommendations, yerk. An oolong from a spot twenty miles from Darjeeling, or so it would seem.

Once brewed, the notes that I associate with darker oolongs are more present. There’s a muted and slightly earthy cedar smell mixed in with the cocoa, along with the hash-like scent that I remember picking up in such profusion from Dawn. It all blends together to create something like a very good, sweet cup of black coffee — not the Maxwell House stuff, not the Starbucks stuff, but more like the little single-estate South American coffees I remember grabbing at Whole Foods and grinding myself (names sadly forgotten; it has been ages since I had coffee last).

It produces a lighter, brighter cup than Dawn — no surprises there — but the flavors involved are so very similar that I think anybody grieving the disappearance of The Simple Leaf could do worse than to secure themselves a cup of this oolong. To me, it waffles between being very obviously a darker oolong with all of those rich, complex flavors, and my memory of Dawn, with its intense cocoa personality.

Might have to make a cup of Dawn after this to compare.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

Eating-intensive trips are the best! Most of my vacations have food as a focal point. Good luck on your quest to find more Dawn. :)

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2784 tasting notes

Another of my 1 oz. sampler thingies from Tao of Tea, I did not log this one yet, an oolong from India close to the darjeeling region.

It is very rich, toasty, and fruity. But it’s also a bit too darjeeling-y for my taste personally. It’s kind of astringenty and seems to have a lot of tannins. I am sure some people would love it but it’s getting the soy milk treatment from me. I thought this was ok, but not a personal favorite. Would not mind swapping this to someone who likes ceylons & darjeelings and would probably appreciate it a bit more than I will. It does seem very clean and bright.

200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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104 tasting notes

Back-logging from Monday.

1st infusion: 4 minutes
Color is a deep red-brown and it tastes very much like the unsweetened iced tea you get at restaurants…and that’s WITH a teaspoon of sugar. I think 4 minutes is too long for the 1st steep. Otherwise it tastes malty and woodsy.

2nd infusion: 2 3/4 minutes
The color is only slightly lighter but the taste is much better. Sweet, malty, woodsy. should have done the 1st steep at this amount of time.

3rd infusion: 3 minutes
Color is golden-brown. Flavor is malty, woodsy, and a bit peachy.

4th infusion: 4 minutes
Color is a dull brown, lighter than previous. The flavor is lighter as well, the woodsy tone has mellowed to something more like loam.

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25 tasting notes


(Detailed Review Coming Soon)

Interesting, this is an Indian grown Oolong tea, one of the first authentic style Oolongs from India. To me it’s very similar in flavor to some Monkey Picked Oolongs (Ti Kuan Yin) I’ve tried, with that distinct toasty aroma and taste, but a bit more acidic—tangier if you will.

Final thought:
It’s a good tea. But I’d rather buy a Monkey Picked Oolong.

My Ratings…
★ = Didn’t Hate It.
★★ = Not Bad.
★★★ = Me Likey.
★★★★ = Impressive!
★★★★★ = AwesomeSauce!

190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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3 tasting notes

This is currently my favorite store-bought tea. It is very flexible with regards to temperature: steeps well at cool temperatures as well as at nearly boiling (though boiling water does taste noticeably worse). It is also very flexible as regards steep time: it gets a nice full flavor steeped lightly (under 3 minutes), but when I’ve forgot and left the leaves in the water for more than 8-10 minutes, it doesn’t taste over-steeped. It does seem to demand a rinse, though a few seconds’ cold water rinse is all it really takes. Delicious, and I enjoy it at any time of day (though I have to be careful not to drink too late in the day…)

190 °F / 87 °C

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15 tasting notes

This tea is pretty great. It reminds me just slightly of earl grey, but far tastier. +1 for Indian oolongs.

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