First the Tea…then The Tale.

Today’s Tea is one of my favorites! Well, I guess they are like your children…they are all your favorite, each in their own unique way. Except the whiny one. Be honest he/she is no one’s favorite. But in the tea world, there are no whiners!

Oolong Teas.  In China and Taiwan, oolong teas are highly revered.  Oolong tea gives you a wide -ranging choice of styles, aromas, and flavors. In traditional Chinese tea shops oolong tea is sold as “wulong” or “black dragon” tea, named for the long, heavily fired leaves of dark, traditional strip-style oolong teas. Some people say this is apt because the leaves resemble the twisting shape of a dragon.

Oolong Teas are the most intricate and complex tea to manufacture due to the fact that oolong teas are partially oxidized and can be made within a range of 12 to 80 percent oxidation that will vary with the type of oolong tea being made.  To give you some perspective, Green Tea has zero oxidation and Black Tea is 100 percent oxidized.  There are 3 very broad categories of oolong tea from China and Taiwan: Open leaf style, semi-ball-rolled style, and strip style.

Bai Hao Oolong (Oriental Beauty) Tea

Oriental Beauty (Bai Hao Oolong) Tea

This is my personal favorite. This one comes from The Indigo Tea Company.  It has been oxidized 70 percent. The tea leaves are exposed to leafhopper insects that take a bite out of each leaf,triggering a partial oxidation of the leaf. After the leaf is more mature and processed, a unique fragrance of honey and roses results in this Darjeeling-like tea from Taiwan.  The aroma is wonderful, smelling clean and with a hint of apricots and peaches.

It should have a nice golden color, clear and pale. You can do multiple infusions at 3 to 4 minutes with water at 180 to 195 degrees. This is one tea you should drink plain. It’s my go to afternoon indulgence!Image result for bai hao oriental beauty

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