831 Tasting Notes

Western leftovers.

My need for green oolong is starting become more desperate. As for this, I’m not sure if I would make it my daily green oolong yet. The first steep western was grassy and bitter with a few clean florals. The later two steeps were much more my speed with florals and tropical fruit, especially after it cooled down. This is still great quality for the price and one of my favorites of the group buy, but I am biased.

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Thank you for the free sample!

Glad to have tried it, and I might need to try it again. The sample was really for one serving, but I tried dividing it up in two for western. It was on the fainter side because of the way I made it, but it was very good. Think berries and cream. The florals and fresh green character were there like in every one of these oolongs, but it was not at all vegetal-only a little grassy if I over-steeped. I know that strawberry oolongs are pretty common on this website, but I cannot speak to how it compares to the others since I’ve not had them. I have had strawberry green teas, and this one far excels those.

Like I said, I’m going to have to try this again when I can afford to because it was a good tea. This is a good bet if you are looking for a good quality flavored tea.

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92

This is one of my favorite flavored teas as of now. I can brew it multiple times Gong Fu, Western, or for long periods in a tumbler. The passionfruit flavor is strong, sweet, and punch-y, and it blends naturally with the smooth texture and the florals of the oolong. My friend who has never had passion fruit thought it was like berry. It can be a little grassy if you use too many leaves, but if you use just enough, it can be difficult to over steep.

If it were not for the price, I would buy this along with the Almond Oolong and the Lychee in bulk because I was that satisfied with this tea. The teas from this company in general wake me up and give me that happy feeling that I can only get from a good tea. They are also refreshing in their own right and very easy to cold brew. So there it goes-a good quality flavored tea that I would recommend, especially for those who like passion fruit. If only I were not two servings away from a sip-down.

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80

I’ve been waiting a while to review this because this was the more tricky oolong to brew out of all the ones I had from What-Cha, and I swear the leaves got weaker over time. Feel free to correct me, Alistair.

I cut the cake in half the first time starting off gong fu with steeps of 45 sec and up. I got something that was certainly similar to a Dong Ding with a banana walnut thing going into each steep. I thought it was interesting that the other two reviews mentioned coconut and cherry. I definitely got the coconut in the smooth texture, and a little bit of cherry in the aftertaste, but those flavors were not the pronounced to me. The tea was on the light side, but it had a pronounced light orange color and yielded about six cups.

I kept on experimenting with it, and the results were not what I expected. I brewed a whole cake in a Gaiwan and then in a much larger pot, and both times, the tea tasted and smelled far different from how I had it before. I got a drying walnut skin mouth feel and a weird charred up banana in the aftertaste-but even then, the brew felt more like water with a slight difference.

I tried a third of the cake, and the brew was weak with little water gong fu and even western in the gaiwan. As for tumblering it, I only got a weird subtle plantain taste amidst texture water.Sometimes, I felt like I was drinking warm milk. After all this, I decided that the only ways this tea works is through Alistair’s instructions of 1/2 cake for 1-2 minutes or 1/2 cake western just under boiling in an 8 ounce cup for two minutes. I get the subtle fruit flavors I like that way, but again, the fruit notes along with any previous florals have slowly dissipated. The flavors also dissipate quickly as it cools down.

Though I was extremely critical of this tea (I do not think I’ve given to a 80 to What-Cha’s oolongs EVER), it was a good oolong anyway. The roast allowed for the tea to not have the vegetal spinach taste that so many green oolongs are apt to, and it did have some very unique subtle fruit notes that you can find in a few other oolongs.

What-Cha

It can be a bit of a challenge to get the brewing just right and the best brewing parameters are largely down to one’s own preference.

Going heavy on the leaf (one wehole cake) and using a small gaiwan or long western brew with a quick rinse first, can amp up the fruity roasted notes giving more of a dong ding like taste. Shorter steeps with less leaf, lean more towards the light floral, more akin to a high mountain Taiwanese oolong.

Part of the brewing difficulty is the variability of the cake size (variation can be as much as 2.5g) coupled with the compressed nature of the leaves, means it’s very hard to keep brewing parameters fixed.

Daylon R Thomas

2.5 grams of difference? Dang.

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100

This is the updated version with more Oriental Beauty. Fall leaves with the smell of lavender and a cream puff is right. The greater emphasis on the oolong brings out the earthy and woodsy notes more making the tea a tad bit darker, but oddly enough, the vanilla and the lavender are much smoother. It’s somehow also turned into a more European tea for me personally which is odd. This was great for volunteering this morning, and it goes well for 3 grams in the 16 oz tumbler, but I found myself curious to add cream and sugar. Funny enough, two of my students smelled it and wanted to try it, and they were able to handle without sugar for a little bit. I added sugar afterwards, but they genuinely enjoyed it enough to come back to drink the rest of it in another class. Keep in mind these kids are twelve to thirteen years old

The 100 rating is more personal than anything else because this was a time of need and comfort tea, but I still think this tea deserves a high rating because it is a unique blend. I typically get three brews out of it western and I personally prefer to go light between 2 and 3 grams. This tea really is for specific circumstances like taking a bath, but it does its job well. If you do not like lavender, vanilla, or dryness-or anything that reminds you of soap like lavender, then stay away.

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This is good cold brewed. Go light on the leaves though. The buttery thing is the same, but some missed out florals and a hint of fruit notes come through nicely.

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Backlog:

I’m a definite fan. Orchid aroma and taste throughout with some malt, roast and honey in the after taste. It actually reminded me of eating a chocolate orchid-the literal flower. This reminded me of black Darjeelings in the way I like them: floral, muscatel, a little dry, and bitter sweet.The darker amber color also reminded me of some Darjeelings. I got several cups gong fu-like 8 or 9. I need to try this western, but know if I am looking for a Darjeeling substitute, this would be a go to for me.

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I liked the green Yushan, but I’m prejudiced. This oolong would probably store better anyway.

Shorter steeps Gong Fu worked best for me by starting at around 15 seconds and slowly adding to that range to emphasize the fruit. I also had to catch it while it was hotter to get the fruit and florals that I would want. The roast was pretty obvious and the tea was fairly savory bordering on butter toast or squash, but it was fruitier than I expected with honey in its profile. Some florals popped up though the roast dominated the tea. This took some skill to get a good balance between the more green elements and the more savory ones.

I’ll write another note. I still love me a good Da Hong Pao and Yan Cha-heck, I prefer them to many blacks for dark teas, but I still prefer greener oolongs to drink more often than dark ones. This one specifically was more medium in roast which I like, being very similar to a Dong Ding in more than one way-especially in the nutty fruity thing it had going on. I enjoyed it, but it would not be a go to tea for me.

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Tumbler Test: I was pleased how well this did. It had a orange-pineapple thing going on with the florals. The minerals were still there, and it grandpa style three times. Most impressive.

With that said, I gotta find myself a lot of jade oolong soon. I should be looking for a daily drinker which this might work for, but there are others I’m debating on- I’m looking for heady florals, fruity, and sweet for any brew style imaginable.

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This was very oolongy with more cocoa notes in the roast that I usually do not expect from an oolong. Overall, it reminded me of toasted grains, oatmeal, and cedar wood, but it was on the sweeter end. I enjoyed it, but I am glad that the sample is not too big. It good enough for me to enjoy another session respecting it as a quality tea but not good enough for me to seek it out.

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Bio

First Off, Current Targets:
Taiwan Sourcing Luxurious Jade Sampler (FRICKIN’ PRICEY)
Taiwan Sourcing Longhan Nectar Red Oolong
Beautiful Taiwan Tea Co. Yu Shan, Stone Table Alishan, Dong Ding, and Dayuling
Berylleb Dayuling
The best coconut/pineapple oolong I can find
The best Alishan and or Lishan for the best price
The best Jade Oolong Period.
Drunken Green Dragon J-Tea
My wish list is fairly accurate though it is broad.

Current Favorites:

What-Cha:
Vietnam Red Buffalo Oolong
China Yunnan Pure Bud Golden Snail Black Tea
Taiwan Lishan Oolong
Kenya ‘Rhino’ Premium White Tea
India Orthodox Masala Chai

Liquid Proust Teas:
French Toast Dianhong
Nostalgia

Floating Leaves Tea:
Dayuling

Beautiful Taiwan Tea Co.:
“Old Style” Dong Ding

Me:

I am an MSU student studying to become a high school social studies and history teacher with a minor in anthropology. I unfortunately dropped the anthropology minor, but I am and will continue to be an anthropologist as well as a historian. I love to read, write, draw, paint, sculpt, fence(with a sword), workout, relax, and drink a cuppa tea…or twenty.

I’ve been drinking green and black teas ever since I was little living in Hawaii with a dominant Eastern Asian influence. I’ve come a long way since I began on steepster and now have a better idea of the teas I absolutely prefer. Any tea that is naturally creamy, fruity, or sweet without a lot of added flavoring ranks as a must have for me. I also love black teas and dark oolongs with the elusive “cocoa” note. My favorites are lighter Earl Greys, some white teas like What-Cha’s Kenyan offerings, most Hong-Cha’s, darker Darjeelings, Green Shan Lin Xi’s, and Greener Dong Dings. I’m in the process of trying Alishan’s. I also tend to really enjoy Yunnan Black or Red teas and white teas. I’m pickier with other teas like chamomile, green teas, and Masalas among several.

I used to give ratings, but now I only rate teas that have a strong impression on me. If I really like it, I’ll write it down.

I’ll enjoy a tea almost no matter what, even if the purpose is more medicinal, for it is my truest vice and addiction.

Location

Michigan, USA

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