|Dry AliShan oolong leaves|
The loose leaves, released from their vacuum-sealed packages, release, too, their aromas. This oolong has a lot of fruity notes (though it is not fruit-flavored or -scented), touched with buttery smells. The feel of the smell is creamy and sweet, not too dark but certainly very forward and perhaps a bit bold. A rinse of the leaves with the water, which is not-quite-boiling temperature, opens the aromas, and the various scents gain depth of character, while the ratio of one to another remains much the same.
|After the rinse|
My first two steepings of thirty seconds apiece (using about a teaspoon and a half of leaves in my gaiwan) release promising but not-quite-there steeps. The flavors are slowly beginning to open, but the leaves themselves are still not fully unfurled. With the third steeping (of thirty-five seconds) comes a blossom of color and flavor. The floral sweetness has taken the forefront of the flavor, richly enhancing the cup and the experience of drinking it. I put the leaves through several more steepings before covering them with water for an extended brew that will be chilled for tomorrow and provide a very refreshing beverage.
|Following the second steeping|
This oolong was truly a joy to consume! I am looking forward to preparing and reviewing the Competition Grade of their Taiwan AliShan High Mountain oolong, which they say has been lightly roasted. That said, I certainly recommend trying this, the Premium Grade. On my personal enjoyment scale, I would rate it an 88/100.
I applaud Cameron Tea and wish them all the best in their business. May they continue to provide the world with great tea from Taiwan.
Photo credit to Built from Ink and Tea.
Cameron Tea's Taiwan AliShan High Mountain Oolong is available from their website, here. Use the dropdown menu to select the Premium Grade (as reviewed above) or the Competition Grade.
This review was unsolicited and uncompensated.
Text is copyright 2014, Built from Ink and Tea.