This week I have a student from India in my class. He had contacted me before he came and asked if there was anything he could bring me from India. I thought of some of my favorite memories of India and decided that it would be very difficult to bring me some butter chicken from Tandoori in Bangalore. So, I asked him if he could bring me some Indian oolong tea. I had read good things about the oolong teas from India so wanted to give them a try.
Here you see the package that the Darjeeling Oolong tea from Andees was packed in. This was the outer package which is basically a decorated thick cloth bag. I will find a way to put it to good use.
I got my tea cup set up while waiting for the water to boil. Since it was Monday I used my Monday tea towel 🙂 Here you see the inner package which is a foil lined pouch to seal in the freshness of the tea.
I was not surprised to find that the Darjeeling Oolong was at the heavier end for oxidation. I could tell this as the leaves were long and thin instead of coiled into balls which is usually seen for lightly oxidized oolong teas.
Heavily oxidized oolong teas have a taste that is much closer to black teas, which are more common in India.
The first thing that I noticed as I removed the infuser was the beautiful rich color of the tea. It is a beautiful reddish brown color. This is another indication that it is highly oxidized. Oolong tea that has lower oxidation is usually a pale or golden color.
As I picked up the cup and brought it to my mouth I could smell the wonderful aroma of the tea. There is a bit of a fruity aroma to the tea.
After enjoying the aroma it was time for tasting. This tea has a very full smooth taste with no sharp edges or bitterness that you often find in black teas. It is definitely a tea that you don’t want to spoil with milk or sugar 🙂 It has a bit of an earthy taste that mellows with later infusions. It reminded me a bit of a Big Red Robe tea that I was given by a friend in Toronto.
I also have another oolong tea from India to try, so keep an eye out for another tea post soon.