I know it’s been awhile, been busy, but I have to share this one. I don’t like darker, roasted oolongs, but Verdant has me changing my mind with them. Their darker oolongs have more than just roasty notes that smack you in the face that I highly dislike. There are tons of different flavor profiles within these oolongs, the complexity always amazes me.
So, I brewed this one gaiwan style, 5 oz ceramic-ware, with boiling water. Sorry, no info on how many grams of tea used…I don’t have a scale so I just eyeball it.
The dry leaf is very dark brown with a purplish cast to it, very pretty, and slightly twisted. It smells like vanilla. There are some roasty notes but it’s nice and soft, no smack in the face! I get something floral, but not like roses or jasmine, more like orchid. There is a farmers market a few blocks down the road from me that sells wildflower honey (it’s heavier and darker than clover honey), I smell that in the tea too.
The wet leaf kind of looks like a mix of browned fall leaves mixing with mulch. I smell that soft roasted note, creamy vanilla, and green bananas (?) don’t ask!
The infusions are a dark amber color with all the notes mentioned above but later on I smell a nice sweet cinnamon coming through.
The first steep was 8 seconds. I got the soft roasty notes, vanilla, creamy texture, a nice floral note…again I’m going with orchid, and wildflower honey. The aftertaste caught me by surprise…I had the texture of a green banana in the aftertaste! It was weird but not off-putting.
The next several steeps were relatively the same in taste profile as I worked up to 15 second steeps. The floral notes grew stronger and the weird green banana texture faded. The tea started to settle into itself with dominant notes of orchid, vanilla, and soft roastiness. After that I started to get sweet cinnamon notes coming in. Oh how it was lovely!
Again Verdant always amazes me in the complexity and quality of the teas they find.