The first sip of this completely threw me off guard. One moment I was enjoying the lovely flavours that green oolong seems to have, the next moment it felt like I had very sweet smushed bananas pressed against the back of my mouth. I thought it was some kind of weird not-sugar splenda thing but as I continued sipping it became clear that it was all bananas. It’s a little disconcerting how dramatic the bananas are, to be honest. They taste more “real” than the oolong- which makes the transition between the two slightly awkward.

I picked up one of the banana cubes in the wet leaves and they taste like one would expect, although a tad sweeter. Maybe I should steep it longer to bring out more oolong.

Second Steep at six minutes: The liquid smells so good! I have a hard time describing oolong but the aroma is a mixture of that and fresh banana. This is a vast improvement; the banana and oolong flavours no longer feel like their divided by a Pink Floyd-esque wall of social contact. Smooth transition is achieved. The oolong is milky and buttery; the banana is creamy sweet and the liveliest I’ve ever tasted it in tea.

Third steep is my ideal cup. Mostly creamy green oolong with the light banana sweetness faded mostly to the background.

I don’t know what gives with my first steep. If I had based my judgement on that I would have given something around a “70”. As it turns out, repeated steeps make this something I want to keep around.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 6 min, 0 sec
Ninavampi

Great review! :)

Cavocorax

" I have a hard time describing oolong " – YES! THIS!
Sounds like an interesting combination though!

CrowKettle

Thanks! This was a very neat, and surprisingly good, combination. I think I had a disproportionate amount of stevia leaves though, which caused the splenda feel.

When I’ve given friends a cup of oolong for the first time their reaction is usually “oh, this taste very much like…oolong.” At least I’m not the only one who has difficulties with the description. :)

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Comments

Ninavampi

Great review! :)

Cavocorax

" I have a hard time describing oolong " – YES! THIS!
Sounds like an interesting combination though!

CrowKettle

Thanks! This was a very neat, and surprisingly good, combination. I think I had a disproportionate amount of stevia leaves though, which caused the splenda feel.

When I’ve given friends a cup of oolong for the first time their reaction is usually “oh, this taste very much like…oolong.” At least I’m not the only one who has difficulties with the description. :)

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Bio

I started my Steepster loose leaf adventure back in 2012. I can’t say I’m completely new anymore, but I still view oolong as a magical, extraterrestrial creature that unfurls in water.

White teas, roasted/fired green teas, and the not so roasted green oolong varieties are my favourites.

Currently looking for the most buttery and sweet green oolong I can find.

Ingredients/flavours I enjoy (in moderation): anise, butter, caramel, cedar, cream, floral, grapefruit, jasmine, lavender, lemon, lime, maple, marshmallow leaves, melon, mint, orchid, pine, rice, rose, vanilla.

Ingredients/flavours I tend to dislike: apple, cocoa nibs, licorice, marine, peach, stevia

Subjective Rating System 2.0:

91-100: My absolute favourite tea. Will impulsively buy and hoard like a dragon.

86-90: A favourite tea. May have quality flaws that I choose to ignore.

76-85: A lovely tea, maybe of high quality or masterful blending, but not one I’m likely to order again.

70-75: Enjoyable, but I may have few minor problems with quality, consistency, ingredient chemistry and/or personal preferences.

50-69: Quality, consistency, blending, or personal preference problems are apparent, but I wouldn’t pass up a cup.

11-49: Varying levels of undrinkable tea. I don’t give a lot of these ratings out, since I tend to grab teas I know will appeal to me.

1-10: Nightmare tea from the chaos realms. This is last year’s low-grade bancha mixed with rancid coconut, stale cocoa nibs, over-enthusiastic hibiscus, and combined with stevia sweetener. I’m pretty sure it doesn’t exist.

Location

BC, Lower Mainland

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