Hello Tea Friends!
Let’s see today’s tea reveal…
The Ruan Zhi Oolong N° 17 tea cultivar, the queen among Thai Oolong teas, orginally comes from Taiwan. In Doi Mae Salong, center of tea cultivation in north Thailand, the tea plant finds optimal conditions at altitudes between 1200 and 1600 meters. In hot water, the beautiful, carefully handpicked, rolled leaf unfolds to its full size within less than a minute. The resulting cup is clear and of amber color, mild, yet rich in aroma, with velvety sweetness and a charming flowery note to its taste.
An Oolong always goes down well and I always seem to enjoy drinking a tea with the word Jade in it, probably because that’s my middle name.
In appearance these little balls are a beautiful muddle of greens that bare a toasted grass and dry peony scent.
Steeping Parameters: 5g leaf, 250ml vessel, 85C water
First Steep: 2 minutes
Once steeped this tea is yellow in colour and bares a rich yet dark, toasted herbs and flowers scent. It reminds me very much of fresh baked bread.
This flavour is so much sweeter than it smells. Buttery, toasted, flowers and tree bark which sweetens into a honeyed, rice cream sort of flavour.
It’s like a delicious meld of sweet and savoury.
Second Steep: 3 minutes
More buttery and smoother which I didn’t think was possible. Very toasty still though, and I can’t shake the rice flavour. One expects it to be horrible by the sound but it’s very pleasant. Similar to another Oolong I’ve had from Siam Tea.
Third Steep: 4 minutes
It seems to have perked up in strength again, and it’s also got a little bitter now. Perhaps sour is a more adequate term.
Toasted rice, butter and honey suckle are still very much present. It’s less toasty though, not really wooden as it once was. Sort of mineral tasting now too.
Fourth Steep: 5 minutes
That mineral taste again, almost green and fresh like. Still very buttery and rice like. It truly is a more savoury tea but with sweet notes.
Perhaps dryer now though in the after taste. I get a powdery substance on my tongue but honestly it’s not that bad.
Some random leaves from the last steep. They appear to spell the word ‘fig’ but I assure you it’s coincidental. Unless this is how you read tea leaves….
A delicious and interesting Oolong with savoury character that also packs a sweet melody.
I can’t wait to reveal tomorrow’s tea.