The origin of oolong tea can be traced back to the Fujian province of China. The mountain terrain and climate in this area, creates perfect conditions for oolong tea production. The most popular oolong tea from the Fujian region, is Tie Guan Yin oolong, known in English as ‘Iron Goddess of Mercy’. This famous oolong tea is renowned for its beautifully floral and perfume-like aroma and its smooth flavour, which imparts delicately fruity and buttery notes.
Another popular region for oolong tea production, is the island of Taiwan - also known amongst oolong tea-lovers as ‘Formosa’. Some of the best oolong teas are produced in the Taiwanese alpine region, which is home to the Ali mountain and the Li Shan mountain range.
The flavour of oolong tea can vary from fresh and green with a floral aroma, to thick and woody with a toasty aroma. In between, is a variety of fruity and sweet oolongs with a honey-like aroma. The unique flavour of each oolong tea, stems from the growing environment, unique production method and the level of oxidisation. Most oolong teas are semi-oxidised. Lightly oxidised oolongs impart a fresh flavour, where as highly oxidise oolongs have a richer taste.
Oolong tea is created through a unique processing method. This process involves bruising the harvested leaves, withering them under natural sunlight and allowing them to moderately oxidise, before twisting them into curls, spirals or pellets. The tea is then baked and roasted, to extract moisture and halt oxidation.
During the production of oolong tea, a high level of attention is given to timing and temperature. This very precise control of the conditions of treatment, brings out the distinctive flavour, colour and aroma of oolong teas.
Oolong tea is a sought-after beverage in China and is commonly used in the Gongfu Cha tea ceremony of the Fujian province. Fine quality oolongs are generally grown from unique cultivars, which are created through selective breeding.
This superlative Taiwanese oolong tea imparts an exquisite combination of sweet, fresh and invigorating flavours with notes of roasted nuts, tingling mint and a lingering and pleasant aftertaste of ginseng.