Very strong – not to be over-steeped or enjoyed on an empty stomach, and certainly not both. Good quality, unfolding brew after brew. Overall, a solid Wuyi.
“Made a cup of this to take to work and just sipping it now :D such a great oolong :D” Read full tasting note
“After reading Geoffreys response to Amy about the amount of tea one should use in a Gaiwan I figured I would take his advice. So I used more leaf than I normally do and the result was...” Read full tasting note
“As you can see I got my package from Verdant so you can expect some more reviews from me in the next few days as I am babbling away due to caffeine overload. :) I fear this tea may have spoiled...” Read full tasting note
“I enjoyed this quite a lot! I actually just did my first side-by-side(-by-side) tasting of the same tea from different vendors with some Red Robes I have in my cupboard. So I'm going to try and...” Read full tasting note
It took Verdant Tea 4 months of sampling to find a Big Red Robe unique and delicious enough to really justify importing. This incredible tea from the rocky cliffs of Wuyi mountain offers a side of Big Red Robe that most people have never seen. Usually all you get is caramel, chocolate and floral notes. This goes far beyond. In early steepings, there is an intriguing sensation on the tongue, almost like the metallic vibrations of a bronze cast bell, or the idea of fast moving water flowing over slate. As the tea opens up, there is a perfectly synthesized note of orange and elderberry that dominates, and lingers in the back of the throat. In middle steepings, the elderberry orange flavor splits into fruity wine grape notes, hibiscus-infused dark chocolate, and molasses cookies with crystalized Thai ginger. In late steepings, the thick beany and malty flavor of Laoshan green comes through, combined with the lilac sweetness of Tieguanyin. One of our favorite aspects of this tea is that it was expertly roasted in a way that lets so much complexity come through the caramel notes of any darker oolong. If you are interested in oolongs, or seek a very comforting yet engaging tea, give this a try for a new perspective.
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This is a really lovely oolong from Verdant. I found the flavor profile unusual, at least in my tea experience so far… Most of the oolongs I’ve tried are either green/orchid/floral or roasted/peach/orchid in terms of flavor. But this oolong is very smooth and creamy, and tastes strongly of oak. I can taste a subtle note of vanilla, almost more of a texture than a taste. There’s a bit of a nutty quality too, but the oak is the most dominant.
Incidentally, I steeped this tea according to the “Western” parameters on Verdant’s website. I have to say, I really like how their teas taste with the extra-short steeping times. (Just 30 seconds for the first steep, then adding 15 seconds for each cup afterward.) I have to use a lot of leaf, about a tablespoon or so, but it’s worth it. The tea turns out so flavorful and smooth, and it seems like it’s easier for me to pick out the interesting notes.
Anyway, this is a delicious and sophisticated oolong! I’m glad I had the chance to try it as part of their 5 for 5 sampler, and to expand my experience with tea. I’d never tried a Big Red Robe oolong before, and I have to say, I’m intrigued. Too bad I’ve already finished off my sample! Perhaps I’ll order more soon?
Got a sample of this one with my last Verdant order!
I hear a lot about this tea it feels like, so I’m happy to have gotten a sample of it.
The steeping aroma was pretty light and roasty.
The taste was more than just roasty-ness though. There were hints of floral that made it a lot smoother and lighter.
Wasn’t sure I’d like this one since I’m not really drinking a lot of roasty teas lately, but the floral notes really do balance this one out. Not bad at all!
Happy To have tried this one! Thanks for the sample, Verdant! :D
Flavors: Floral, Roasted, Smooth
I bought this tea from LuciTea last winter. Thank you.
I really enjoy dark oolongs, but I think Red Robe has to be my least favorite. This has hints of mineral, earth and carmel. This as a less tangy/fruity bite too it than and lot of the similar oolons. I have at least 1/2 ounce left of this. I will have to compare with the other Red Robe I own.
Lewis and Clark TTB #18
Oolong and puerh aren’t very well suited for travelling tea boxes, at least those with a deadline. You need to do half a dozen steeps to get the full picture of the tea, which means you can only do a couple of teas per day.
This tea is a good example. I wasn’t terribly impressed by the first steep: it seemed very dense and dark, like a black tea without a whole lot of character. however, on each subsequent steep, a richer, green flavor started to build, making for a fuller, richer tea. The darkness is still there, but now its more of a cello in the orchestra, providing depth underneath the violins, which dominate.I’m on my fourth steep now and it’s still going strong, Unfortunately, It’s nearly 3 PM, which is my self-imposed deadline for caffeinated tea. As a result, I’ll never know how far I could have taken it.
Just brewed it for 1.5 minutes and I am nervous that it will taste too light. But here goes… The scent of the leaves, pre-brewing, was like chocolate. But now the scent from my steaming cup is an earthy one.
Not being used to oolong, this is an interesting taste for me. It’s mild and earthy, like a green tea with roasted rice.
I let it brew longer (4 mins) and tried again… This time the smell is deeper and even more earthy. The taste is much stronger, but again – so earthy. It reminds me of brown rice tea, which I don’t really like- so maybe I’m not an oolong person.
Flavors: Toasted Rice, Wet Earth
I tasted this tea when I was visiting Verdant’s store, but this time around it’s quite different from how I remember it.
A rinse with boiling water, and then very short steeps (pour on and immediately pour off.)
On the nose I’m getting minerals and a whole lot of lilac with some earth and smoke.
The start of the sip is woody, almost getting into nutty, but that quickly shifts to spectacular amount of the characteristic mineral taste, so much that I can feel the minerality on the back of my teeth.
With subsequent steeps there’s a bit of creaminess on the back of the tongue developing, and a very tangy vegetal finish, that includes some grass and spinach (which is reinforced by the mineral teeth feel.)
I really like the experience of this tea, even though the woodiness at the start of the sip isn’t a flavour I’m really into. But holistically, this is lovely.
Flavors: Creamy, Earth, Floral, Grass, Mineral, Nutty, Smoke, Spinach, Tangy, Vegetal, Wood