Why Oolong Is Our Go-To Tea … And Why It Should Be Yours, Too.
The cat’s out of the bag: Oolong is our very favorite kind of tea. In fact, we like it so much that we started a company devoted to selling only Taiwanese oolong teas. That must mean we really, really like it, right?
Right. Here’s why:
Highest quality + unique growing conditions.
Taiwanese oolongs (and excuse us for bragging, but especially Tea Ave’s oolongs) are very high quality, described as the “champagne of tea.” This may be because of their special growing conditions: Taiwanese oolong tea grows in a subtropical climate, with cool humid conditions and fog-covered mountains.
An artisan’s tea.
In addition to their unique growing conditions, oolongs also require labor-intensive processing and superior craftsmanship. The processing of oolong tea is a delicate balancing act: freshly harvested leaves are dried on flat bamboo mats and withered under sunlight for an hour, and then withered under the shades or indoor for six to eight hours. Then, the leaves are gently shaken and tossed every hour, causing the leaf edges to bruise. After that the leaves are fermented and oxidized, followed by panning and baking. The leaves are then rolled and shaped several times and re-fired. After that, they’re put into proper storing, cooling and packaging. A lot of effort, yes – but we think it’s worth it.
Best of both worlds.
Black teas are fully oxidized; green teas are completely unoxidized. That means that oolong teas represent the entire spectrum, from very lightly oxidized (green oolongs) to roasted, highly oxidized oolongs. The style of production also varies greatly: Some leaves are rolled tightly into curled balls, while others are dried in a long, twisted shape. Flavors vary from sweet and fruity with a honeyed aroma to woody and thick with a roasted aroma to green and fresh with a floral aroma.
Good-quality oolong tea can be steeped several times using a gaiwan. In fact, it’s over the course of many infusions that a great oolong’s flavors and aromas are revealed. An aroma cup set helps to enrich the oolong tasting experience, too, bringing forth the delicate taste and incomparable fragrance for which oolong teas are known.
Ample in flavor and full of rich aromas, Taiwanese oolongs are truly a tea lover’s dream. With a diversity of flavors that unfurl like flower petals, oolong is a tea that appeals to connoisseurs not only in Taiwan but now worldwide, too. That’s why it’s our go-to tea—and we think it should be yours, too.