2016 Spring Tie Guan Yin 'High Roast' from Anxi (China)
Cultivar: Tie Guan Yin Oolong
Harvested : spring 2016
Origin: Shi Ping, Anxi Province, China
Process: high roast (slowly up to 150 degrees Celcius)
This tea is from the same maker as the 2011, 2012 and 2013 versions.
The dark brown dry leaves are rather small. Their surface isn't shiny (as is the case with many over roasted Oolongs). The brew is clear and shiny. The golden brown color looks warm and appetizing!The leaves are unfolding a little bit. They have kept a little bit of elasticity, but here we are as close as we can be to over roasted Oolong.
2. The scents
The fragrances are heavy and sweetly intoxicating. Good Italian coffee, black chocolate, fudge and nuts appear under the nose. All this bouquet is without a trace of fire, roast or rubber smells. It's completely natural ; there are no off flavors. What is amazing is that the tea has no fire or charcoal smell (only the wet leaves). The fragrances of the tea feel even darker and fruitier than those of the dry leaves. The first brews are the more powerful. There is something for coffee lovers in these leaves...
3. The taste
The taste is very sweet and full body. Except if you're using too many leaves, it's difficult to overbrew this tea. A long infusion would just add to the body and lingering feeling without releasing hardly any astringency or bitterness. The whole body experiences a warm and relaxed feeling.
Conclusion: This is a wonderful tea for a cold day or to make the switch from coffee to tea.