This was another of my sipdowns from the present month. I finished what I had of this tea around the start of last week. I wanted to compare it to the Taiwan ‘Charcoal Roasted’ Oolong Tea from What-Cha because I had a sneaking suspicion that it was the same tea. Even though I found a lot of the same aromas and flavors in this one, this was apparently a different tea produced in a different location. Of the two, I ended up preferring this tea because it was slightly fuller in the mouth, displayed slightly more longevity, and had a few intriguing components that the other tea lacked.
I prepared this tea gongfu style. After the rinse, I steeped 6 grams of tea leaves in 4 ounces of 203 F water for 10 seconds. This infusion was chased by 17 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes, and 20 minutes.
Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves produced aromas of cinnamon, vanilla, cream, cedar, roasted almond, toasted rice, and roasted barley. After the rinse, I detected new aromas of charcoal, baked bread, brown sugar, butter, and raisin. The first infusion brought out aromas of toasted coconut, chocolate, roasted peanut, and smoke. In the mouth, the tea liquor offered notes of cinnamon, cream, butter, vanilla, cedar, charcoal, roasted almond, roasted peanut, raisin, roasted barley, and toasted rice that were chased by hints of toasted coconut, baked bread, brown sugar, smoke, caramelized plantain, grass, and spinach. The subsequent infusions introduced aromas of grass, spinach, nutmeg, coffee, pine, green olive, kale, apple, and pear. Stronger and more readily detectable notes of baked bread, grass, spinach, smoke, and caramelized plantain emerged, while chocolate notes also made themselves known. I also picked up impressions of minerals, nutmeg, pine, watercress, green olive, coffee, tart cherry, kale, apple, pear, ginger, and grilled pineapple. As the tea faded, the liquor emphasized notes of minerals, toasted rice, roasted barley, roasted almond, roasted peanut, cream, butter, and vanilla that were backed by hints of kale, grass, brown sugar, caramelized plantain, apple, pine, smoke, watercress, and green olive.
This was a very satisfying roasted oolong with a bevy of interesting aromas and flavors. Everything worked well together, and the tea liquor had a pleasantly full body with a nice, creamy texture. Fans of roasted oolongs would likely be into this one.
Flavors: Almond, Apple, Bread, Brown Sugar, Butter, Cedar, Char, Cherry, Chocolate, Cinnamon, Coconut, Coffee, Cream, Fruity, Ginger, Grass, Kale, Mineral, Nutmeg, Olives, Peanut, Pear, Pine, Pineapple, Raisins, Roasted Barley, Smoke, Spinach, Toasted Rice, Vanilla, Vegetal