I received this generous 15 g free sample in an order I placed last fall, so I assume it is from the spring 2019 harvest. Gardenia is one of those flowers whose fragrance is sometimes hard for me to pin down in tea, so I was happy to get an example of what it’s supposed to taste like. I steeped 6 g of leaf in a 120 ml teapot at 195F for 25, 20, 25, 30, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds.
The dry aroma is of gardenias, other heady flowers, peaches, and sweet cream. The first steep tastes strongly of gardenia, orchid, butter, cream, peach, banana, and grass. It’s simultaneously sweet and kind of waxy, and drying in the mouth. The banana and peach persist in the second and third steeps. I get a distinctly floral gardenia flavour as well. The banana becomes more prominent as the session goes on, especially if I let the tea cool. The tea develops a lovely, thick body with a gardenia aftertaste. The florals and grass take over by steep seven, and the session ends as one with a regular green oolong would, with floral, vegetal, and grassy notes.
Although some people might consider this oolong to be too perfumey, I like floral teas and enjoyed this one. I also think it would make a great cold brew.
Flavors: banana, Butter, Cream, Floral, Gardenias, Grass, Orchid, Peach, Sweet, Vegetal