Tie Guan Yin “Iron Goddess” Oolong Tea

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Oolong Tea Leaves
Floral, Orchid, Pleasantly Sour, Sour, Grass, Menthol, Sweet, Vanilla, Butter, Gardenias, Green, Marshmallow, Roasted, Sugar, Jasmine, Peas, Astringent, Creamy, Vegetal, Spinach, Honeysuckle, Earth, Mineral, Popcorn, Vegetable Broth, Cream, Apricot, Flowers, Fruity, Sweet, warm grass, Smooth, Cake, Cucumber, Melon, Orchids
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Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by TeaVivre
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 15 sec 5 g 7 oz / 220 ml

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125 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I drank myself half silly with this one all day yesterday at work. Six (12oz) mugs I think – kind of lost track. I came in this morning and the leaf was still lush and green. I thought what the...” Read full tasting note
  • “First of all, I’m going to start off by getting a little personal. For about three and a half years now, I’ve been battling severe addiction and depression. But for the past few weeks, I’ve been...” Read full tasting note
  • “My second sampling of TEAVIVRE samples arrived today!!! So excited! Thank you Angel and TEAVIVRE so much for your generosity!! This was my first sample to try. I used only 2tsp of leaves instead...” Read full tasting note
  • “A really great tea! I was feeling down and so this is my late night pick-me-up. I really appreciate how much information was given on this tea package. I think that it was nice to have exact...” Read full tasting note

From Teavivre

Origin: Anxi, Fujian, China

Ingredients: Jade colored leaves (hand made into small, rolled up)

Taste: Delightfully fresh floral taste and aroma

Brew: 3-4 teaspoons for 8oz of water. Brew at 212 ºF (100 ºC) for 1 to 3 minutes (exact time depends on your taste – a longer time will give the tea a stronger taste and color)

Health Benefits: Tie Guan Yin tea is the premium form of Chinese Oolong teas. Being lightly fermented, these teas are high amino acids, vitamins, polyphenols and antioxidants. These combine into a tea that reduces cholesterol and helps reduce hardening of the arteries, and so can help reduce risks of heart attacks. The antioxidants it contains can also help guard against some forms of cancer, and also help fight the affects of aging and bacterial infections.

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125 Tasting Notes

1627 tasting notes

This was so delicious! I steeped it 2 times before I got bored. But this is one of my favorite oolongs. It is milky and not bitter. The floral tones mixed with sweetness is amazing. Delicious!

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34 tasting notes

Finished the last of this today, and I’m a little sad it’s gone. It was a really good Tie Guan Yin. My office just got a new water dispenser as part of a switch to a new vending company, and it has a hot water spigot that dispenses clean, hot, and not funny-tasting water on a consistent basis. Yay! This means I get to take teas to work that are better than I would have normally taken, since I’m hesitant to waste good tea on “office water”. Before this I don’t think the hot water dispenser was properly maintained – it always tasted like some cleaning product. 0_o

This was a good work tea since it didn’t get bitter with extended steeping (I tend to throw the leaves in the cup and wing it) and it lasted for more steepings than I expected.

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709 tasting notes

This sample was provided to me by Angel from Teavivre approximately 1 to 2 months ago. My apologies in the delay before tasting, life got away with me. I’ve decided to do all my initial reviews on these teas following package directions. Though I would not ordinarily steep an oolong in boiling water for 1 to 3 minutes, I will give it the old college try, and hopefully post an additional note at another time with my usual parameters. For the tasting, I am using my gaiwan with one sample packet and sharing with the beau in our little double walled teacups.

Dry leaves smell sweet, and remind me of hay and grass. The beau proclaims them earthy but as in “of the earth” not dirt. : )

First steep: One minute, boiling water. The liquor is pale yellow with a hint of green, not nearly as deep as I feared. The smell is very vegetal, my first thoughts are boiled spinach and leafy greens. This does not appeal to me, but I’ll give it a shot – once it’s cool enough to drink! The leaves have opened a LOT and are very pretty in my gaiwan. As it cools the boiled greens aroma fades (yay) and the taste is surprising. There is an aspect of green vegetalness (ya, I said vegetalness, what of it? :D) but this is really nice. I am not a green tea drinker and tend to prefer oolongs that are more like black teas, but this is really pleasant. Surprisingly sweet and rich. There is a floral aspect which is very present in the taste, but not overwhelmingly. Reminds me of a few flowering teas I have tried and enjoyed. I’m impressed! The beau, on the other hand, says “it’s kinda plain”. Well.

Second steep: 2 minutes, boiling water. The liquor is much darker this time ‘round though the smell is fairly similar. Let it cool so I don’t burn my tongue and the taste is actually quite vegetal with a hint of bitterness. Jumping up to 2 minutes was clearly too much for me, I should have stuck at 1.5 for now. For an experienced oolong drinker the bold vegetal aspect of this might be appealing, but it is a bit too much for an oolong novice such as myself. Ah well, it’s my own fault! The beau proclaims that this steep is better and he likes it more. He has a recently discovered love for green tea, so this makes sense.

I think I will take a break now to prepare lunch and add any notes about further infusions later on, if I think of it. I have only tried 3 or 4 different Tie Guan Yins now, so I barely know what I am talking about but I found this to be really present and quite bold. Though I feared the boiling water, I think that is what maintained the strength of flavour.

Boiling 1 min, 0 sec

I like your ‘disclaimer’ in the start of your review. I have two teas myself of her’s from awhile back that I still have to brew up, and review (I did brew up most of them right away, though). She’s amazing at her willingness to send out samples. And from what I have seen and hear, its starting to pay off. I hope to order from her this summer/fall, when we will actually need tea.

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326 tasting notes

Tea sample provided by Teavivre for review

Tried this again tonight in my teapot. It’s pretty nice but I still prefer it prepared with short steeps. With the teapot one steep method I’m getting very powerful sweet notes. While I do like a touch of something sweet in my oolong, this longer steeping method doesn’t please me as much. And with multiple quick steeps I get a nice spectrum of flavour.

So for my remaining two samples, I will enjoy this prepared in my small yixing teapot. But I can see this as a nice flowery, sweet tea prepared “western style” for those that enjoy something bold that also satisfies their sweet tooth.

500ml water in teapot, 1 packet (5g), 1 steep

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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90 tasting notes

The smell in the bag is closer to a green tea, vegetal and seaweedy. Once in the cup though, that is some floral right there! It’s a burst of jasmine into your nose hole.

Dry tea is full of lies.

This tricky goddess was just pretending to resemble a green tea, but her charade ended as soon as the hot water hit. Another example of misleading liquors; the delicate, pale yellow color of this tea hides an abundance of flower power. Now we know how the goddess likes to be worshiped: her altar must be strung with pungent garlands and sweet-smelling candles. Luckily… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/05/25/snooty-tea-review-teavivre/

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226 tasting notes

My husband actually helped me with my second sampling of this tea. We used a lot more leaf this time, four teaspoons to make 16 oz. of tea. The honeysuckle flavor, while not that much stronger, did seem to last longer, all the way into the third steep. However, by the fourth steep the flavor was again completely vegetal/floral. After that point, neither of us were really that interested anymore. After it loses its sweetness, it’s just not quite as delicious. And when it’s gone, it’s gone. It almost tastes like a completely different tea. Well, overall, I don’t think I’ll be purchasing this one, just because the flavor degenerates so much, but I’m glad I got to try it. Thank you to Angel from TeaVivre for allowing me to sample this one!

200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 15 sec

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648 tasting notes

Thank you so much to Teavivre for the ridiculously generous sample pack.

I am still a novice to these straight, quality teas, so I have to write my review of this on a comparison basis.

I have recently come to realize I am a fan of oolongs, though as with most teas I prefer the flavored to the unflavored. I did enjoy the milk oolongs I’ve tried so far, which I don’t think were flavored but yet still creamy and buttery and a bit sweet, which is definitely what I want in an oolong.

An example of an oolong I didn’t like was the Tung Ting Vietnam from Davidstea, as it was super spinach tasting to me. I do not like spinachy tea, so that is to say that I prefer the less vegetal teas.

This one was somewhere in between. So far I’ve only had one steep, I followed the directions and went 2 minutes at boiling, I think 1 minute would have been fine to allow for a stronger second steep. I will give that a try later on.

Steep one at 2 minutes was pretty flavorful. This is not a very sweet or creamy oolong, it was a bit vegetal but not so much so that I was turned off. I am not sure I would order it, however.

I did get samples of the milk oolong (both flavored and unflavored) and I am very excited to try them.
As of now I am incredibly impressed with this company just based on their customer service.

I know they have quality teas, and if I rate my samples in a mediocre way it has nothing to do with the tea and everything to do with my own tastes at this point on my little tea journey. I like that I am slowly broadening my horizons – baby steps!

Glad to try this and looking forward to steeps 2 and maybe 3 :)

I decided to not bother with a numerical rating as I don’t want to bring down the score, as I said I don’t feel I am qualified at this point given my own tastes. Teavivre has a great rep so when I want some good straight teas I know where to go! Thanks again!

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1220 tasting notes

It’s too cold outside. Of course I won tickets to an outdoor event taking place today so I have to spend the hours leading up to it drinking this tea.

I’ve never had a Tie Guan Yin before, and I don’t know why it’s taken this long for me to have one. I like it! It has a really full flavor, creamy and floral at the same time. It’s like a green tea with a really good punch.

I’m not at my own apartment right now and I hate that I’m having to use a T-sac instead to steep, but it’s kind of hard to carry a teapot with you when you’ve got to take a bulky winter jacket and boots to prepare for the next day. I’ve got plenty more so I can watch as the leaves unfurl as soon as I am back home!

I will still probably steep this again if I have time before having to go freeze. It’s reeeeeally good!

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294 tasting notes

The dry leaf aroma truly makes me anticipate the aroma of the brewed tea and the subsequent flavor that will follow. The kitchen was filled with the aroma when I doused the leaf with a 4 minute steep. I would love to use the Gaiwan but my time lately has been limited. As I await the tea to cool slightly I ponder the generosity of Angel and I would like to take this time to thank her.
Immediately upon consumption I am reminded why I am so fond of TKY. The tea has flavors that are bordering on a minted spinach butter liquor. The energy is inviting and a wonderful way to start the day. Invigorating and calming at the same time. To me, the sign of a fine tea.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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117 tasting notes

My 4th review!

Water: 8oz Boiling

Leaves: Dry leaves-Small circles & Wet-The leaves were huge,the biggest tea leaves I’ve seen so far with my brewing experience!

Steep: 3 minutes

Aroma: The scent was the strongest of any of the previous teas made,I was surprised. It took me quite some time to type the aroma,floral.

Color: deep pale yellow

Taste: I rinsed this tea first due to reading that it’s good to rinse Oolong teas first. I did so for 30 seconds then brewed regularly.The taste was light with floral accents despite it’s deep yellow appearance.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

Oolongs resteep several times and change some with each cup. By about the third cup the leaf fills the pot.

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