Taiwanese Orchid Oolong

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
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Caffeine
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Certification
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Edit tea info Last updated by Spoonvonstup
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 45 sec

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22 Tasting Notes View all

  • “You've GOT to be kidding me! This is SO UNIQUE...I don't even know where to begin! It's smooth but it's sweet...it's sweet but it's creamy! It's creamy but it's candy-like! It's floral but...” Read full tasting note
    95
    teaequalsbliss 6770 tasting notes
  • “Wow, what a great way to start off my weekend: I was digging through my room, looking for my iPod, and I found this sample mixed in with some Classic Rock CDs. I don't know how it got there, but...” Read full tasting note
    95
    smitty1110 244 tasting notes
  • “Once upon a time Verdant sold this tea, and I bought a oolong sampler than included it. That was ages ago! I found the remainder of this sample kicking around the back of my tea drawer and decided...” Read full tasting note
    86
    dinosara 1994 tasting notes
  • “I tried cold brewing this last night and at first I liked it better but I still can't quite dig the aftertaste. If anyone wants to swap please let me know. I'll probably end up blending it with...” Read full tasting note
    52
    amyoh2 2475 tasting notes

From Verdant Tea

The raw material for this scented tea comes from Dong Ding, the most famous of the tea growing regions of Taiwan. The leaves are allowed to sit with orchid flowers as they dry, absorbing the floral aroma. They are then hand-rolled and finished. The tea builds over each sip to a strong, almost candy-like quality with the creamy floral quality of any great green oolong.

About Verdant Tea View company

Company description not available.

22 Tasting Notes

95
6770 tasting notes

You’ve GOT to be kidding me!

This is SO UNIQUE…I don’t even know where to begin!

It’s smooth but it’s sweet…it’s sweet but it’s creamy! It’s creamy but it’s candy-like! It’s floral but it’s NOT grassy! OMG!

Let’s chat about the candy-likeness first, I guess…

You know those hard pieces of candy – old fashioned – that have a tad of powder coating on them…loose powder – right over the top!? That’s what this reminds me of! This has a texture both loose leaf – dry and the actual tea liquor texture that I have NEVER come across! Then once the sip is complete the taste morphs and lingers! It’s very hard to describe but I am totally LOVING this! It’s almost like a licorice…not a hardcore licorice…but a sugary sweet toothy type candy licorice NOT the black tarry kind.

There is an awesome raw sugar type taste to it too! Very unusual but I say that with the utmost respect and interest as I am already a HUGE fan of this!

I’m going to ponder on this one more but for now I’m going with a 95 and I think the rating can only go up! This is so unique and so different – I’m truly impressed!

RachanaC (Rachel)-iHeartTeas

You have peaked my interest.

Twilight

I love orchid oolong! Too bad it’s so pricey.

CHAroma

How does this tea compare to the Hand Picked Tieguanyin Spring Oolong from Verdant Tea? They both seem to have the same description and candy-like comparisons.

TeaEqualsBliss

I would say the other one is more honeysuckle-esque if that makes sense!

David Duckler

Thanks for the review! Your reaction to drinking this is pretty much the same as mine was the first time it was brewed for me. Very fun to read this and relive drinking the tea. The man who supplies this one had a certain grin on his face like he already knew what I would think, and I gave him the exact “You’ve got to be kidding me!” that you wrote. His response was essentially, “yeah, that’s right.”

About the differences between this and the Tieguanyin. This tea starts with an unroasted Dong Ding oolong from Taiwan. Dong Ding is a bit different in texture and flavor compared to Anxi Tieguanyin. It is thinner in mouthfeel, while also sweeter and more citrus-like. The spring harvest Dong Ding is then allowed to absorb the scent of orchids over a one week period much like traditional jasmine scenting. The orchid scent in this one extends the aftertaste, and interacts with the unique Dong Ding texture to be pretty thrilling.

The Tieguanyin is equally complex, but there is more buttery and creamy texture to it. The candy-like sweetness is more of a saffron and honey sweetness, and not a raw sugar sweetness that “TeaEqualsBliss” so aptly captured in her description. The floral notes are more tied to sweet grass flavor than to the licorice flavor of the Orchid Oolong.

Sorry about the price Twilight! Taiwanese oolongs are generally more expensive to start with because of cost of land and cost of living there. This one is a spring picking that is normally sold unscented at a pretty high price, and then allowed to absorb orchid flavor in the traditional and time consuming method of spreading out new flower blooms among the tea leaves each evening for a week. Luckily, you don’t need to use too may leaves to steep this one up, and each batch of leaves yields many infusions. The price per 8oz cup is about 15-20 cents when you do three steepings and a tsp per 8oz.

Luckily for all of us, love of tea is a lot cheaper than love of wine or even cheese!

Winter Salo

wow – I have never been so jealous reading a review! As soon as I read it I went to their website to see if they do international orders and they do – just wondering about the taste of the candy and the flour aromas, I really don’t do well with mango, peach, stone fruits in general flavouring in teas – is this tea free of those sorts of aromas?

TeaEqualsBliss

I, personally, couldn’t pick up on any mango/peach fruits on either of the teas. I think you will be pleasantly surprised!!! I’d say GO FOR IT :)

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95
244 tasting notes

Wow, what a great way to start off my weekend: I was digging through my room, looking for my iPod, and I found this sample mixed in with some Classic Rock CDs. I don’t know how it got there, but I’m not going to question it…

Anyway, I’m re-tasting this tea after several months, and I have to say that the taste is much better than I remember. It is similar to my Art of Tea orchid Oolong, but creamier, which makes the whole experience so much better. The aftertaste is also a bit stronger, lingering for three minute (It lasts even longer than Tie Guan Yin! How does that happen?!?!?) on the roof of my mouth. Needless to say, I’m bumping up the rating, and I can’t wait to see how it develops.

Alright, second infusion same temperature, steeped fro three minutes. The tea has developed a pleasant sweetness, which reminds me of some sort of confection confection. I don’t know exactly which one, but I would guess it reminds me of one of the Japanese sweets I got from a friend. Anyway, the tea is so delicious, I actually regret only having a small sample left, as this is the perfect desert tea.

Third infusion, four minutes, 205 degree water. The tea lost a lot of sweetness, but it still reminds me of some sort of confection. the aftertaste still lingers for over a minute, and it still retains the creaminess that made it so appealing in the beginning. It’s still an exceptional tea, but I think it’s a bit past its prime now.

Forth infusion, five minutes. The tea has started to loose the creaminess, but luckily the sweetness did not degrade further. Overall, the strength of the taste didn’t change, which is the beauty of Oolongs: Their flavor lasts for a very long time, providing many cups of wonderful tea. I think I’ll probably get eight cups out of this, mostly because it’s a green Oolong, which tend to loose their taste a bit quickly then others.

Fifth cup, stopped keeping track of time, just going by color from now on. The creaminess lingers, but it’s mostly gone now. Interestingly enough, the tea retains its sweetness, as well as the lingering aftertaste.

Sixth cup, process the same as before. It’s starting to get a bit bland. It has lost all of the creaminess, it isn’t as sweet, and the aftertaste doesn’t linger very long. I’m gonna call it quits on this one. That being said, it lasted a long time, and it tasted great. I’ll miss this a lot when I finish off the sample.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C
Bonnie

Happy Saturday!

K S

I can just imagine back in the day trying to explain a bag of loose leaf mixed in with my classic rock CD’s to my mom. Of course it wasn’t classic then and it was vinyl. Go ask Alice…

Joshua Smith

@K S – That would be a bit weird. I actually keep my collection hidden, since I don’t think my parents would be happy to realize I have almost a whole kilogram of tea stashed under my bed…

In this case, I’m pretty sure I simply forgot to pack it up to take to college, and it just ended up getting shoved into my CD collection by chance.

@Bonnie – Happy Saturday to you too! Hopefully the weather is better for you, it’s 90 degrees here.

Bonnie

It is hot but we have dry heat and the nights are cool. I was just going to turn on my air conditioner to. Automatic but low.

Lynne-tea

That sounds absolutely delightful. And very funny hiding spot.. though I really do understand. I am starting to consider hiding my tea stash even more as currently it is in my room with five shelves littered with tea… A new hiding spot may just keep the ‘you have a problem’ comments at bay! Hmm.. perhaps one of my closets would be the best idea.

Joshua Smith

@Bonnie – Very nice. We’ve got 70% humidity, so it might only be 90, but it feels like…98-ish. Luckily, my family is going on vacation on tuesday to the British Isles, where we will be enjoying rain, rain, showers, and more rain!

@Lynne-tea – It’s better than my hiding spot at College, where it all ends up in a single drawer. My friends actually think I have a problem, but we mostly gotten over that after they tried some of my stash XD.

Bonnie

Ooooo have the most wonderful time right-o!

Joshua Smith

Indubitably.

Bonnie

That was so spiffy cute!

Joshua Smith

I just couldn’t resist. Unfortunately, we’ve just covered about half of my British vocabulary…

Oh well, I’ll make sure to pick up some more on the trip!

Bonnie

Bobby, Boot, Nappie, Pint.

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86
1994 tasting notes

Once upon a time Verdant sold this tea, and I bought a oolong sampler than included it. That was ages ago! I found the remainder of this sample kicking around the back of my tea drawer and decided to use it up. I decided to give this one the gongfu treatment and put what was left in my little ru kiln teapot. The dry leaf still smells green and floral and lovely.

I used the general oolong gongfu instructions that Verdant provides: quick rinse, ~5 second first steep. The wet leaf smells remarkably charred and roasty, which was totally unexpected. Guess I forgot this was a half-oxidized oolong base. The tea, however, smells floral in a thick, rich, dark way, and tastes ridiculously sweet. Seriously, did someone put sugar in my pot when I wasn’t looking? On this first steep I can’t quite get beyond that candy-ish, slightly floral flavor, like pure sugar. At times there are notes in the background of green-ness and a very slight hint of toastiness, but mostly an overwhelmingly sweet aftertaste that lingers in your mouth and the back of your throat, reactivating every time you breathe in. It’s quite extraordinary.

Unfortunately my subsequent steeps weren’t so awe-inspiring… the sweet aftertaste remained, though growing fainter, but the main part of the sip is just kind of vegetal and a little roasty and bit boring to be honest. But I have kind of consistantly been unable to make multiple tasty steeps when I do gongfu, no matter what I seem to do, so it’s probably more me than anything else.

Preparation
Boiling

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52
2475 tasting notes

I tried cold brewing this last night and at first I liked it better but I still can’t quite dig the aftertaste. If anyone wants to swap please let me know. I’ll probably end up blending it with something else to mellow it out.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 30 sec
Charles Thomas Draper

You know I do not care for flavored teas but I love this one….

TeaBrat

It’s so strange the way people’s tastebuds are different…

Charles Thomas Draper

It is a great dessert tea.

TeaBrat

If you want mine you can have it…

ScottTeaMan

I tend to like just about everything, ’cept Rooibos…….well, I can drink it, but my tea time is better spent on another tea.

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98
4458 tasting notes

OMG! Amazing! Ahh-mmmmmm-azzzz-ing!

Of the few Orchid Oolong teas that I’ve encountered, this one possesses the strongest Orchid essence I’ve ever tasted. The others were like … yeah, ok, that’s orchid…maybe… but this is ORCHID. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoyed those others too. But, this has the most amazing and well-defined orchid essence.

It also has this incredible sweetness to it… like old fashioned rock sugar candy that I used to get from the candy shop on Main Street at Disneyland.

If you like Oolong – put this on your MUST TRY list … and at the very top of your shopping list.

TeaBrat

I want some!

KeenTeaThyme

Just added to my list – this sounds so yummy!

Charles Thomas Draper

this sounds like a winner. Verdant has not let me down yet. And I do’t think they will….

DaisyChubb

On my list :)

Geoffrey

Just drank this again a couple days ago with a tea friend. I almost can’t believe this tea… The rock candy sweetness that hits you in the aftertaste with repeated sips is just bewildering… What was happening during the growth of this tea that made it produce such potent sugars of its own!? An amazing tea.

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68
1290 tasting notes

Gosh, if I had been aware that I had not already posted about this one, I would have picked something else.

Very tired, can’t think.

Boyfriend quite liked this. I find it reminds me of ginseng oolong, with the licorice-y flavour right when swallowing. This happens with cooling. When it was still all fresh and warm and stuff, it was much more flowery.

This is all I’m capable off right now.

Could have lived without the ginseng-y flavour. That was not what I was looking for at all.

TeaBrat

this was definitely not a favorite of mine

Angrboda

If I had known what I was going to get, if I had been prepared for it, I think I would have liked it better. As it caught me completely by surprise (LOL nearly wrote ‘slurprise’ there) it was difficult to be really fair when scoring.

Autumn Hearth

Just out of curiosity do either of you ladies have any of this left? I fear I’m never going to get to try this.

Angrboda

Yes, I have about 25grams or so. They’re yours if you want them. Shoot me a PM. :)

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92
252 tasting notes

Thank you, TeaEqualsBliss! This is my first Verdant Tea, so I’ve been really excited to try it.

I felt today was the perfect day for this. I’m a bit stressed, as I got an order on etsy for a large number of knitted hats, and I need to pack for college AND everything else since my parents are moving. All in less than a month. This seemed like it would really help calm me down a bit.

Steeping, this smells so good. It makes me think of that feeling right when you get your blankets out of the dryer and just want to hide in them and be comfy. There is this slight scent in there that makes me think of baking bread.

I love how this tastes! So smooth and creamy. There’s this sweetness that kinda sticks on your tongue after each sip.

I look forward to trying more Verdant Teas…if I ever have the money! Maybe some free samples, eh? wink, wink But seriously, this tea is really good and it held up well to a second steep.

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96
356 tasting notes

Thanks to Lindsay for this one. My first Orchid Oolong. Now I’ve seen Orchid’s, Licorice, Ginseng oolong, and King’s oolongs and they seem to be synonymous with each other. Or so I thought. Check out the package no coating on the dry leaf really like you might see on some licorice oolongs(that candy coated like shell). Brew up the first cup. Eh kinda of a semi roasty nutty flavor to it. I didn’t get that sweetness though till the end of the cup. I didn’t really enjoy the first steep. However, in consecutive steeps afterward this tea really begins to unfold like an orchid. In the second steep is where I’m starting to detect the orchid. It reminds me of jasmine scented teas, but you can definitely tell that it is orchid and not jasmine. Then you have that sweetness at the end of the sip. This I enjoy quite a bit. I might be wrong but there has to be a little bit of ginseng in there or licorice root to produce that sweetness. If I am wrong…fabulous. I am thoroughly enjoying this tea. So with steep 3 and 4 I combined it with a sample of Teavana’s Dokudami Umami. The combination with licorice root in the umami was fantastic. I can’t wait to finish the rest of this, and try more to come!

Autumn Hearth

You wouldn’t happen to have any of this left would you? I’m dying to try just a teaspoon. Feel free to check out my cupboard, I have other Verdant samples not listed and of course a Teavana hook up.

The DJBooth

I do have some left I would be happy to share some with you.

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88
294 tasting notes

This is my second tasting of this magnificent tea. I used the Gaiwan again with generous leaf. My steep was approximately 2 minutes. The result is a glorious golden nectar. This flavor is lingering in my mouth. This tea is awesome. So much better this time. And, as we know, it going to get better with the following steepings. I gave the second maybe a little over a minute. This tea is like having dessert. Without hesitation I recommend it. I have to up the score. I cannot believe the taste that’s In my mouth. Sublime…

Charles Thomas Draper

One thing I have to comment on: After the third steep it totally lost the sweetness but it is still a good oolong….

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95
300 tasting notes

Ohhh wow this… is… incredible. Simply yet ever so complicatedly incredible. As in my tongue and my nose do not believe what they are tasting and smelling. I have never had an orchid oolong and I wanted so very much to try this when I saw it on Steepster a couple months ago. I inquired first with David as to if it would be returning, when it seemed not, I turned to Steepster and used it for what it is: a community, a community of very generous tea lovers. So I asked around, starting with the locals and those who didn’t care as much for this one. The good lady Angrboda who is in no way local, answered my plea and sent me this and some other lovely samples from Europe! Thank you so very much for giving me the opportunity to try this, I am so grateful.

The teas from Ang arrived a couple weeks ago, but alas I had a sinus infection and put them off. However if I had known what this tea was going to do to my throat ans nasal passages i probably would have drank it right away. It is so cooling and cleansing and tea gods don’t strike me down, but it does remind me of my brew of Throat Coat and Twig Tea. However I am glad I waited to take the time to fully savor this, I probably would have thought I was crazy for that observation then anyway. For today I have the house to myself, a rare blessing, as my mother has taken the toddler to a parade. I took a shower, lay down for awhile and treated myself to this very special tea for my 99th tasting note and after this I think I may do some art!

Upon opening the pouch I was met with an unexpected aroma, true I didn’t know what to expect, but definitely not dark grassy Gyokuro. I have not found this grassy note in the cups I have brewed and infact it changed as soon as the leaves hit the warm mug, to something strange and culinary I just can’t put my finger on. I did the quickest of steps with water just off the boil and the smell changed to something more earthy and illeagal, the word hash sprang to mind, though I only have one vague years old memory that. The aroma of the liquor shape shifted in the cup as the taste did in my mouth, starting out sort of charcoaly and morphed into that cool almost medicinal brew (medicinal in the most natural herb and root sense).

I was worried at first that I had scorched the leave as it started out toasty, then came a slight sweetness, then a coolness at the back of the mouth, developing into candy and flooding my nose from the inside out. I have never had ginseng oolong, but I can understand the comparison as this is all ginseng and anise and only the slightest bit of floral, candied flowers, orchid concentrated, sweetened and made into a cough drop and a nasal spray and I love it. Yes it is sweet but it’s also intense, almost harsh at moments, but with a self-soothing mechanism built in.

So I can understand why a few didn’t care for it, but I immediately want to share it, in a tasting with Yabao and the ‘04 Yanxin’s Reserve Shu Nuggets. Me thinks this would have to be the last tea tasted though. I wish I had enough for that and a cold brew, but sharing wins out. But for now I am going to see if I can draw out more that these first five infusions, it’s getting a bit ashy, but I think there is still life in them yet. Thank you Angrboda for sharing this and David Duckler and Verdant Tea for supplying and sourcing it!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec
Angrboda

YAY for successful re-homings! I’m so pleased that you found it worth the bother of asking around for it and I’m equally pleased to have it off my hands. :D

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