My second Butiki oolong of the weekend! Yesterday’s was the Lychee Oolong, which was a resounding success. This one, not as much. It still made for an entirely pleasant cup, but the vibrancy and accuracy of flavor that so impressed me with the lychee just weren’t there.

The dry leaf smells a bit like fresh strawberries, which is unusual: most strawberry teas seem to smell and taste like, at best, cooked strawberries or strawberry jam, and, at worst, like strawberry candies. It’s quite delicate, but it’s there.

Once the tea has steeped, though, it’s pretty much pure oolong. The base is light, green, fresh, faintly vegetal – totally non-objectionable, but still, I don’t really love this oolong – it’s fine as a base for a strong flavor (lychee!), but doesn’t entirely stand up on its own. There are some fruity or perhaps floral undertones, and a bit of an underripe-berry aftertaste, but they’re quite faint. This is, unsurprisingly, doubly true of the second steep.

I’m going to have to try this again with more leaf, or maybe as a cold steep, since the flavor combination seems just right for iced tea.

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Likes: greens, dark oolongs, genmaicha, fruity greens and oolongs, chai, matcha, jasmine, Assam, Ceylon, Darjeeling

Dislikes: spearmint, chamomile, stevia, marshmallows, unflavored white teas, green oolongs

I’m always open to swaps; let me know if you’re interested!


New York, NY

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