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Recent Tasting Notes
Jennifer still feels that Fong Mong offers some of the BEST Oolongs out there!
Check out THIS MORNING’S Review at Sororitea Sisters
Beautiful leaf with almost a copper complexion to it when you turn the leaf around. Giving a smell smell to the brewing liquid I expected a honey taste as it reminded me of a oriental beauty. Unfortunately, what I thought was going to be an amazing tea ended up having the second most funky taste I’ve ever encountered. The best way I can describe it would be oversalted butter melted and then mixed into some instant tea. It was one of the hardest few steeps to get through as the leaf looked so great that I decided to continue at least 7 steeps to see if it changed… no, still really awkward tasting; though I’ve had this same experience with another gaba oolong before.
As I mention in my full-length article of this tea: http://sororiteasisters.com/2015/01/03/taiwan-gaba-oolong-tea-from-fong-mong-tea/ Of the many Oolong teas that are out there, I think that GABA Oolong teas are the one that I probably have the least amount of experience with. I’ve only tried fewer than a handful of this type of Oolong.
This is sweet and nutty with hints of spice. It has a lighter taste and texture than what I would normally experience from an Oolong. It’s not as creamy as Oolong teas often are.
Later infusions were stronger tasting, with a well developed roasty, toasty sort of flavor that I enjoyed. Subtle notes of peach began to emerge and develop. My last infusion had a really pleasant development of the peach note.
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/08/13/taiwan-four-seasons-fruity-sijichun-oolong-tea-from-fong-mong-tea/
These are some of the smallest Oolong pellets that I’ve ever seen, they look much more like gunpowder than a typical Oolong. The aroma is more floral than fruity which surprised me a little bit given the name of the tea.
A nice apple-like flavor to this, with floral notes and hints of a grassy like flavor. A really good Four Seasons Oolong. Please see my review (link above) for details on each cup/infusion.
Thanks to Fong Mong for this free sample. It’s been ages since I have cold brewed an oolong but I decided to do that last night. This definitely seems to have a roasted, slightly nutty flavor in addition to the nice vegetal quality I am getting. I won’t rate this since I never got to try it hot, but it’s good this way.
Now off to the farmer’s market for some vegetables!
This is tied with the Pou Chong for favorite sample from Fong Mong Tea!. Thank you, Fong Mong!
I made this gong fu style this morning. A quick rinse, maybe five seconds, released buttery aromas, and the scent of sweet green veggies.
I kept the steeps fairly short and made five so far, tasting a sip in my tiny cup as I first poured it, then adding the remaining tea in the pitcher to my tetsubin to meld each steep together so that I will have an impression of the flavor western style as well.
The liquor is a soft golden color. The aroma is buttery sweet greens, and there is a slight astringency, not unpleasant and quite possibly due to my steeping. This is excellent and very enjoyable.
There is a sweet fruit flavor that rises in the throat after drinking this. Delicious!
Thank you again for the opportunity to sample your tea, Fong Mong Teas!
Made the last 3 grams of this western style with the below prep details.
I think overall I’m a fan of the shorter, multiple steeps. Green oolongs in general tend to be too vegetal for me to enjoy when I brew them longer. Maybe I’m brewing at incorrect water temperatures or too long. I think I need to play around with oolongs a lot more than I do.
I did enjoy this more the first time I brewed it at the shorter steeping times.
Another sample courtesy of Fong Mong Tea – thank you!
Steeped 150 ml of 190º water with 3 grams of oolong for an initial time of 3 minutes. This produced a nice mild oolong – not overly vegetal. It smells more vegetal than it tastes. The second steep (same amount of water with a 5º and 1 minute addition) is a bit stronger in vegetal flavor, but smells less so. The third steep I think I may have left the leaves in too long, because I’m not fond of the taste. There’s kind of a bitter taste in it.
I really like the first steep the best, but next time I’ll try the full 6 minute soak.
Steeped for 6 minutes at 85 as suggested, but tastes a bit “overcooked”. Not astringent, or bitter, just overdone. Liquor is a light sunflower yellow. Has a strong oolong taste and smell, but also reminds me of a dragonwell – buttery, reminiscent of veggie broth and a titch earthy.
Definitely not what I was excepting at all. I don’t detect any floral or fruity notes. I was also surprised to see some twigs/sticks in the tea, which I haven’t encountered before – unsure if they’re supposed to be there or not, but would guess not.
In subsequent steepings I lowered the water temperature to 80, which I found much more favorable, but only got 3 steeps total out of the leaves.
I’ll admit, I was a little afraid to steep this for 6 minutes, having only ever steeped Oolongs for much much shorter times, but it came out absolutely lovely. Sweet, soft, beautiful. Mmmmm.
The second steep was much less sweet with more of the oolong leaf flavor coming through, but very nice with a light floral fragrance and taste.
Having never had an Oriental Beauty before, I was quite interested to hear how it was made. Here’s a blog post (To which I am not affiliated) on some basic history – http://teamasters.blogspot.co.nz/2007/02/study-of-oriental-beauty.html.
Trying another gongfu session this afternoon. This is 6g (exact measurement) of tea for my 6oz pot. This tea was a sample provided by Fong Mong for review (that I’ve been bad about getting around to tasting), so thanks!
Perhaps it is just the power of suggestion from the name but the dry leaf on this tea does smell fruity to me. This time I steeped this oolong at slightly under the boil, for 45 seconds as recommended by Fong Mong, after a rinse. The tea smells very floral and a bit fruity, with a bit of vegetables underneath, but not leafy vegetables like I often get with oolongs. More cooked zucchini or something. The flavor is mild at first sip but it quickly blossoms in the mouth, sweet and candy-ish. Still with a bit of those vegetables, as if it was candied zucchini (which I saw some chefs do on Chopped recently, so maybe that’s where I’m getting the idea from). I like it, it’s pretty different from most other oolongs I’ve tried.
Second steep is, once again for me, kind of lackluster. I steeped it an additional 15 seconds as instructed by Fong Mong, but it has now lost much of the sweetness and more of those leafy vegetal notes are coming out. I don’t blame the tea because, as I’ve said, this is a problem that has plagued me for a while. I tried to do an extra long steep, almost western style, but it’s always as if I steep out all the good flavors early on.
I am rating this one based on the first steep, which was very tasty and unique.
(Free sample provided by Fong Mong Tea. Thank you!)
Teapot/tasting cup method
- 150 ml / 3 gr
- 95 C / 6 min
- 85 ml / 3 gr
- 95 C / 4 min, 5 min, 6 min
Leaf & Infusion
Dry leaf – Mainly dark with addition of larger and more loose copper-red leaves with fine white hair. There are also some really small white buds in this small heap.
Wet leaf – Fresh fruity aroma with honey and flowery undertones. When compared to other rolled oolongs such as TGY, the leaf is somewhat smaller and variegated in shades of coppery-brown and olive green. The well preserved structure of leaf reveals its one bud – two leaves picking standard and the stalk is relatively thin and only few have wooden texture.
Infusion (Teapot) – First sip reveals rich taste and fruitiness with honey-sweet finish and intensive aftertaste of the two. As tea cools down there can be sensed some muscatel notes that get a stronger magnitude as tea continues to cool down. I did two more steeps, 8 and 10 min, and former brewed a delicious cup leaning more to lighter mouthfeel than first steep and almost as equally aromatic experience. Ten minute steep came out with decent fruity liquor that was enjoyable.
Infusion (Gaiwan) – This method seems to show off more of Oriental Beauty’s finer nuances. The infusion is rich and along of its usual fruity and honey aspect there are some earthy and woody notes involved backed with pleasant astringency and touch of bitterness.
I’m on my sixth infusion now … this tea started out with a very strong sweetness that was very fruit like, tasting like something between a plum and a peach. Very sweet and juicy, with hints of sour. Hints of vegetative notes and toasted grain were in the background, and the floral tones were barely there.
By the fourth infusion, things began to change… the fruity tones had subsided, falling back into the background and becoming more of a memory than a present taste. The floral tones emerged, and there was a savory bitter tone that arrived about mid sip. More like a sharpness that lent a contrast to the sweeter notes. The vegetative notes have become stronger.
Now, the vegetative notes are much stronger than in the first four infusions, and the floral notes are pungent. The roasted notes are a bit like charcoal, and I don’t taste as much of the creamy grain notes that I noticed in the first couple of infusions…
It’s still very pleasant now, and it’s very interesting how much this tea changes over the infusions. I preferred the first couple of infusions, but I also enjoyed the transitions.
I sometimes forget that Oolongs are my favorite tea. Every once in a while I will have a cup of tea like this one that makes my taste buds have a party in my mouth and my brain kicks in saying “This is sooo good! It has to be your favorite Nina!”… And so, I agree with my brain, yeps, Oolongs are just spectacular.
My boyfriend took me out for sushi tonight (lucky me!) and I was in the mood for something smooth and unflavored. Oolong was the perfect culprit!
In the bag the tightly rolled leaves smelled slightly sweet and much like milk oolong. They had a hint of mineral plantiness.
Once brewing the scent was overwhelmingly creamy and sweet. So delicious. I stood sniffing my tea the whole time it steeped, enjoying each breath of creamy promises of tastiness. The liquor was olive green and sparkled in the light of my kitchen as I waited for it to be cool enough to sip.
Once brewed, I was in love. It worked exactly like an Oolong should. First it fills your mouth with creaminess, followed by a slight mineral refreshing flavor and finally has a grand finally of sweet and savory as you swallow. I wish my cup could have lasted longer… Thankfully I have second and third steeps to look forward to! :)
Thanks a bunch to Fong Mong Tea for this spectacular sample!
Second Steep (the tea sat overnight and I am having it with breakfast)- Second steeps are usually my favorite, but this time around, the first steep takes the prize. I am finding the second steep to be a tiny bit more astringent and floral than the first creamy sweet steep. Still really enjoying it! :)
Thank you to Fong Mong for the sample.
I’m getting a little fruity notes from this one, but not too much. It definitely has that unmistakable oolong taste. It’s a little bit creamy, too. I’m getting a slight bitterness, which makes me wonder if I steeped it for too long. I did the recommended 6 minutes, but that seems a little high.
Thanks for Fong Mong Tea for this sample, I have been delayed in reviewing them because I want to ensure that I had a couple hours over which to do multiple steeps.
This tea came in lovely little balls with not too much of a fragrance.
1st steep: colour is a pale green, deliciously sweet smell. The main flavour is a sweet citrus-y flavour- almost lemonade-esque. Not too much in terms of vegetal flavours yet.
2nd steep: More earthy notes came through, less sweet but the citrus is still there
3rd steep: All sweetness is gone, earthy citrus-y taste, pleasant enough but I like my oolongs sweet.
Overall, this is a good oolong, but not among my favourites. It wasn’t sweet enough for my liking, but it was still a nice cup.
Thanks to Fong Mong Tea for this very generous sample!
Several months ago a friend sent me a sample of a Tung Ting that I loved. Of course, the tea shop is halfway across the country and doesn’t have a website. Since then the memory of that tea has been sitting there in my head, and I’ve tried oolong after oolong looking for a similar one… but I was always disappointed.
Oh, I love this. The leaves are small and tightly rolled, shiny and bright and soft green. I used the whole 6 gram sample for 16oz, brewing western style because the bowl part of my tasting set has disappeared!
The scent is very light, sweet and a little green, with light floral notes. And the flavor is also very light and sweet, with a base “oolong” sort of flavor – warm and green. It’s like a spring day, when the air is cool and the sun glints through the grass and the wind smells vaguely of the sea.
Fantastic oolong, and I’m so glad to have tried this! Thank you Fong Mong Tea!
Second and final cup of this one, part of a sample from Fong Mong Tea. I’m trying to drink down a few things to feel like I have things under control, which is totally not true…
I still think the first infusion of this oolong is really amazing, just lightly floral and fruity and oolongy. I’m not even sure I want to have a second infusion tonight because it was so unimpressive last time, and I have a host of other teas down here that I could have instead. Ah well. This one is serving my desire for a tasty oolong tonight, and that’s all that matters :)
ETA: Second cup is just generic, like I remember. Sad.
Ooh! This one’s really good! It clearly tastes like an oolong, and I definitely taste a fruitiness moreso than floral taste. This is really, really delicious! I’m actually rather surprised! The aroma is also fruity rather than floral. I’m really pleasantly blown away by this one! It’s also deliciously buttery and good. Man… I’m so impressed! I would buy this again in a heartbeat :) I used about 3g of leaf (maybe 4 by accident?) in about 8 oz., maybe less, water, at 94C. Yum! Going to go do another couple infusions now. Thanks to Fong Mong Tea for this sample!
ETA: Second infusion (94C/3 min I think, or possibly 4) is not nearly as tasty :( Smells like an oolong, tastes like a weak oolong that has somehow been oversteeped. I’m a bit disappointed. The first infusion was spectacular. Downgrading the rating a bit, because I expect at least 3 good infusions from an oolong, otherwise it’s not worth my while as they are typically expensive. It’s possible that I used too much water, and did use 4 min which was too much, but I’m not sure. I’ll try a third with quite a bit less water.
ETA again: Sadly, disappointed with the third infusion as well. There’s a bit of oolonginess, but it’s just not up to par with other oolongs I’ve had. I’m so disappointed because that first infusion was worthy of a high 90 rating.
I really enjoyed this one it’s very nice some earthiness with astringency of a black tea and roasty oolong nuances. Nutty smooth on it own and slight fruity notes with sweetner added almost muscatel some one else said like “licking a grapevine” thats was about right not in a bad way at all tho. Many steeps for this one I enjoyed the first steep to me could have even been tossed and considered a rinse because the second and third steeps were much more flavorful. Wonderful tea I want to get some more of this.
Oh lookie! ANOTHER Oolong! :)
Not that I’m complaining…it’s the complete opposite, actually!
This Oolong SURE IS a beauty! Sure…I have had other Oriental Beauty oolong before…but how is this one different? Well, the first thing I noticed was the dry leaves smelled like a formosa-type with a bit of natural citrus notes.
The taste was delightful! It’s gentle, a bit floral, but a sweeter-floral, maybe a touch of sweeter-nuttiness, too. I could also taste those subtle citrus hints, too! This is juicy and – dare I say – succulent? YUM! This is great!