Sweet red berries, dried apricots and dark chocolate morph into faint fragrances of toasted muesli and dried figs. Tightly twisted lengths soak up the hot water, releasing more dried fruit aromas: prunes, figs, raisins and charred honey. Golden brown, like the late afternoon sun through stark leafless trees. Soft and chewy, but tight and light, focussed, simple and easy. Gently refreshing. (Daniel Honan @thewineidealist)
Leaf: semi ball rolled
Liquor: copper, autumnal
Aromatics: hints of lime, sandalwood, cinnamon and cardamon. Treacle.
Palate: creamy salty caramel molasses, very late dried blueberry, some savoury spice elements.
The Alishan 'Black' Oolong is one of a classy new category of Taiwanese teas called 'Brandy Oolongs'. Grown at an elevation of over 1000 metres in the famous Alishan region of Taiwan, it is 90 per cent oxidised.
This tea is produced by an outstanding tea maker, who is meticulous in his farming practices and takes pride in the quality of his products. The high mountain environment in which this tea is grown is pristine. See our blog post on Taiwan Tea Travel for more information and photos.
Origin: Alishan, Taiwan.
Quantity: 4g/200ml (1 tsp per cup)
Water temperature: 90°C
Steeping time: 2.5 minutes