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Oolong is immediately recognizable due to their stout, crinkled and rolled leaf style. When infused, the tea unfurls revealing full leaves with bruised, slightly reddish edges. The light liquor and palate cleansing profile make this tea the perfect companion to a relaxed afternoon appreciating the finer things in life.
So how is it made? In Taiwan, making Oolong is considered a precious art. To make one as fine as this, requires years of formal training to master. From nursing new seedlings, to planting, nourishing the bushes, and properly selecting the best time to pluck the leaves, the intricacies of Taiwanese tea husbandry are passed down from one generation to the next. The great masters believe that it is only through the transfer of carefully protected secrets that the finest specimens can be produced. Production involves rolling the fresh leaf followed by a brief fermentation period. Once the leaves have begun to turn brown, they are fired under high heat to capture the unique and highly intricate flavor profiles. It is interesting to note that a shorter firing produces teas with an almost peach-like character while a longer firing will produce a rich amber cup with bakey notes. Classic Formosa Oolong undergoes a slightly longer firing than some others and subsequently produces a cup that is exceedingly smooth, somewhat toasty and long on the finish. An exceptional tea, entirely worthy of a celebration of its own.
Brewing for Best Results
Ideal Brewing Temperature: 190°F/88°C.
Modern Method: Bring filtered or freshly drawn cold water to 190°F/ 88°C. With an infuser, use 1 slightly heaping teaspoon of loose tea per 8 oz of fluid water. Rinse the tea first by placing enough prepared water over the leaves and leave set for 10 seconds. Discard rinse water. Do not drink. Steep 3-5 minutes according to taste (the longer the steeping time the stronger the tea).
Traditional Method: When preparing by the traditional method, this tea can be used repeatedly - about 3 - 4 times. Bring filtered or freshly drawn cold water to 190°F/ 88°C. Place 1 slightly heaping teaspoon of loose tea per 8 oz of fluid water. Rinse the tea first by placing enough prepared water over the leaves and leave set for 10 seconds. Discard rinse water. Do not drink. Pour the prepared water directly over the leaves after the rinse. Steep for about 2 minutes then remove leaves. Rinsing the leaves are not recommended when brewing the second or third time.
Tea(s) From: Taiwan
Region(s): Taoyuan County
Luxury Ingredients: Oolong tea
iced tea instructions
Per Serving: Bring filtered or freshly drawn cold water to 190°F/ 88°C. Place 1 slightly heaping teaspoon of loose tea per 7-9 oz of fluid water. Steep 5 minutes. Add filtered hot tea to 16 oz glass filled with ice.
Per Pitcher: Makes 1 Quart. Bring filtered or freshly drawn cold water to 190°F/ 88°C. Place 6 slightly heaping teaspoon of loose tea in a heat resistant container. Pour 1 ¼ cup of prepared water over the tea leaves. Steep 5-7 minutes. With a fine mesh sieve, filter the hot tea liquor to the serving pitcher filled with ice. Add cold filtered water to top off. (Some luxury teas will turn cloudy when poured over ice).
Making an amazing cup of tea requires several things. High quality tea, filtered or freshly drawn cold water, correct water temperature, time of infusion, and filters/infusers. Unfiltered water or too hot of water can ruin the best of teas. Always use filtered or freshly drawn cold water. Any flavor from water treatments or heavy minerals such as lime or calcium can taint the water. Brew at the ideal temperature. Too hot of water can scorch the leaves and produce a bitter brew. If you find that the tea is still bitter following the recommended brewing temperature, try lowering the brew temperature another 5 to 10 degrees. Use infusers that allow the tea leaves to fully expand and has full contact with the water. Ditch the tea bags. Know the steeping time for your tea. Too long of steeping can make your tea bitter and undesirable. Too short of time will make a weak tea. Don’t make tea in the microwave.
We strongly recommend using filtered or freshly drawn cold water brought to a rolling boil when brewing all types of tea. Today’s water has been known to carry viruses, parasites and bacteria. Boiling the water will kill these elements and reduce the potential incidence of water-borne illness. Cool the water to the ideal brewing temperature before brewing.
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