This is a lightly oxidised oolong from Anxi, Fujian in China. It is called Osmanthus oolong as there is a light floral character and aroma reminiscent of Osmanthus flowers. I was quite dissapointed when I realized this as I have heard of Osmanthus flowers being added to green teas sometimes and that is on my (admittedly extremely long) list of teas I want to try.
This Huang Jin Oolong came from the curious tea discovery tea subscription box. I am a fan of this subscription service as it is very cheap (£9.50 a month) and contains 4 packs of tea of 10g each an ideal size for trying something new. The Feng Yan Phoneix eyes that were my first review were part of the same subscription box and I plan to review the other two teas from the box eventually.
I brewed this tea “Grandpa style” meaning I put the leaves straight into a mug of hot water to brew. Normally I like to use my glass tea set which is a good compromise between traditional Chinese gong-fu (tea ceremony) brewing where small amounts of tea are brewed and savoured like a fine liquor and the Western preference for brewing a decent amount of tea in one go. But my tea set is in the dishwasher so I am using my glass mug which has a built in removable strainer. Unfortunately it is not as photogenic as my usual method (it doesn’t help that I have no photographic skills).
Packaging: As always curious tea’s packaging is clear, easy to understand and full of information.
Brewing method: 3 minutes at 90 degrees
My brewing method: 3 minutes at 90 degrees
Taste: Definitely floral which is surprising for an Oolong especially one with nothing (such as flowers) added to it but there is a subtle flavour of Osmanthus. I found it very buttery a bit too buttery for my personal tastes. There is a slight after taste that is reminiscent of the more popular and widely known lightly oxidized Oolong Tie Guan Jin (Iron goddess of mercy).
Subsequent infusions: The buttery taste abates with subsequent infusions making the tea more balanced. I personally think the third infusion tastes the best as it is more balanced.
Conclusion: This is an interesting oolong and I am glad I tried it but I wouldn’t buy it again, Oolong is a huge category of tea with a wide variety of flavour and my personal preference are for heavy roasted oolongs like Dong Ding or “milk” oolongs like Jin Xuan. Lightly oxidised oolongs are not a favourite of mine though I quite like Tie Guan Jin I would always choose Dong Ding over Tie Guan Jin or an lightly oxidised oolong.
Recommended if you like: Tie Guan Jin or other lightly oxidised oolongs.