Unroasted Qilan Wuyi Oolong

Tea type
Oolong Tea
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Edit tea info Last updated by Dinosara
Average preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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From Verdant Tea (Special)

Reserve Club – July

On our spring trip to China, we had the privilege to try several teas that were mind blowing not just for the taste experience, but for actually stretching our definitions of what tea can be. This tea is a challenge to everyone who loves Wuyi oolongs and Tieguanyin, because it bridges the best parts of both teas.

Starting with exquisite Qilan varietal leaf picked in Wuyi, this tea is not subject to the dark roasting that all Wuyi teas are known for. Instead it is tossed, twisted and dried as light as possible. The result is a fine Wuyi oolong that is green, floral and creamy like Tieguanyin, but maintains the mineral notes of Wuyi.

Enjoying dark roasted teas is a celebration of the craft of tea processing- the enjoyment of the fine subtleties the human hand can bring out in the leaf. Light, unoxidized teas are more a celebration of the land itself, a look at the terroir without any processing. We included this Qilan to open a window into the terroir of Wuyi that is normally closed. Enjoy!

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5 Tasting Notes

1918 tasting notes

Sipdown, 126. Gongfu session earlier today.

Call me a heathen, but I prefer this one western style. It was sweeter, and I liked the layers of flavor then instead of each layer individually. I was tasting each steep individually and then pouring the remainder into a larger cup to drink a bit later, and I have to say that enjoyed the cup more than the individual steeps. But, the point is that I did really enjoy this tea! Of all the teas I’ve experienced through the reserve club, wuyi oolongs are growing on me most.

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2863 tasting notes

Hmmmmm….am I the only member of the Verdant Reserve TOMC?
Somebody else write a review, please!

This is one of the selections for July, which I’m just now getting around to trying. I concluded awhile back that although I enjoy all oolongs, even the floral ones, my favorites are without a doubt the roasted Wuyi varieties. There is just something very sensual about them. I love them so much that I recently got a Yixing just for them.

However, this Wuyi is not roasted, so I’m steeping it in my blue lotus porcelain pot, which is a teeny tiny bit bigger than my yixing, but still tiny & adorable. More & more I find myself wanting to drink certain kinds of teas from specific vessels. It just seems to enhance the whole experience (or maybe it’s just my obsessive compulsive nature?).

So…the dry leaf is twisted & lovely & long, like the roasted wuyis that I swoon over, but the coloring is lighter, without the deep reds & blacks that roasted leaves have. The aroma is a gently sweet & floral incense.

The tea brews to a lovely honey colored cup. It’s sweet, with layers of flavors: honey, some kind of greens (I want to say edible chrysanthemums, but I’ve never actually eaten them), & there is a floral taste & aroma that rise into the sinuses like a fine incense. That’s one of the things I love about Wuyi’s…that incense-like sensation. At first it freaked me out a little, but now I love it.

I’ve been sipping cup after cup of this, while cutting & filing my nails in preparation to practice for a few hours. I have no idea how many cups I’ve drank…maybe 6? The taste is still sweet, not as floral, & my tongue is tingling as if I were drinking a lightly peach flavored sparkling mineral water, making me think of a really fresh & pure artesian spring, bubbling up through the rocky earth, somewhere in the Wuyi Mountains. Now I want to go there, to sit & drink from this spring & just breath. I think I’m tea-drunk, LOL.

Dinosara

Haha, I am still getting them but I haven’t been able to get around to them lately! I think this one will be on the docket for this weekend.

Terri HarpLady

Final note: I stepped out back, wandered around my garden, picked a few perfectly ripe peaches from Ellie (my peach tree, named after my Great Dane who passed from this world 4 years ago). The peaches aren’t always pretty, & you have to sometimes carve around some funky spots, but the reward is SO worth it. There is nothing like a homegrown tree ripened peach! The final cup of this tea, after eating the peaches, is mineral with an bit of a cooked grain like taste.

Bonnie

My memory is shot! I had company too which threw me off. Now I’ll have to go back and see what I’ve logged and what’s missing. Hate when I do that!

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