Review: T-oolongtea.com Honey Beauty Oolong

Oolong Tea, T-OolongTea.com Add comments
Sophie’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"Full bodied yet light, this oolong strikes a great balance between fruit and grass notes. If you haven't tried leaf hopper-afflicted teas yet, this is a great place to start! "
Sophie’s Teaview: 8.4/10
Other Teaviews: CJ gave it 9/10, Vanessa gave it 8.5/10
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This tea is in the same vein as Oriental Beauty oolongs, the leaves having been purposely exposed to the bites of leaf hoppers. The attack of these tiny insects changes the leaves' chemistry to bring about more sweetness. It's unclear exactly how Honey Beauty differs from the more common Oriental Beauty in terms of processing however. T-oolongtea's website doesn't really specify. Taking a look, the leaves are long and spidery. Most display a dark maroon colour, but some have pretty hints of green, tan or gold. Their aroma is faintly sweet and toasty.

Since the leaves are so fluffy, I aimed for 2 level teaspoonfuls. I steeped them in 8 ounces of water heated to 95 degrees Celsius for 3 minutes. The pale, tan-coloured cup has an aroma that reminds me of warm bread with ripe stone fruit. Taking a sip, the tea is smooth and herbaceous at first. There is a delicious tannic quality to the top notes of the brew that reminds me of Darjeelings, second flushes in particular. The tea becomes increasingly sweet and malty as it cools. This cinnamon-honey sweetness is present throughout each sip but it's subtle and changes interestingly over time, eventually coming close to honeydew melon in flavour. The overall results make for a bright, generous, and unique cup that is easy to enjoy.

After a 4 minute-long steep, my second brewing is much deeper in colour. It still has a noticeable honey finish to it and a pleasant herbaceous kick. Otherwise the tea seems rather muted. I would try steeping the leaves a little longer next time – there seems to be little danger of the cup becoming bitter or astringent.

I managed to pull two more decent cups out of the leaves, both of which were nearly identical to the second brew. After a 5 and a half and an eight minute-long steep, these are simple, sweet and well rounded steeps.

Full bodied yet light, this oolong strikes a great balance between fruit and grass notes. The tannins of the initial cup give it a taste that is closer to a black tea than most oolongs. Reasonably priced, especially considering the longevity of the leaves, this tea provides lots of pesticide-free bang for your buck. If you haven't tried leaf hopper-afflicted teas yet, this is a great place to start!

— To purchase T-oolongtea.com Honey Beauty Oolong, or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

Teaviews Member: Sophie Sophie
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