2020 Spring Concubine Oolong from Shan Lin Xi
It has it all!
Cultivar: qingxin (ruanzhi) Oolong
Harvested: April 30th, 2020
Origin: Shan Lin Xi (1200 m)
Process: jassid bitten leaves with strong oxidation and medium, slow roast. Also called Mixiang Oolong (Honey scent Oolong) or Guei Fei Oolong.
The dry leaves are rolled and have a dark brown color. The brew is shiny and clear. The color is a dark orange with shades of brown. The leaves open up well and show signs of insect bites.
The dry scents are strong and complex: there are a lot of ripe and dried fruits with very suggary/honey scents. The brew's scents remind me of dark, syrupy molasse. There are still ripe, honey and red fruits: currant, cherries... but there is also a scent of liquorice that becomes clearer as the brew cools down. This complexity is a gift the tea jassid's bites. The wet leaves have a roasting scent. The 2020 batch is slightly lighter oxidized than the 2019. That's why its aromas are a little bit lighter.
Very pure, clean and sweet. No bitterness or sourness. Just some drying sensation in the back of the throat. The impact on the body is very warming. This tea resonates thanks to a sweet coating in the whole mouth. It lingers in a very deep and slowly building aftertaste. The high mountain origin of this tea adds a lot of power, sweetness and clarity.
Pairing advice: This aromatic and powerful tea is an ideal candidate for pairing with a meal or dish that would call for a fruity red wine. A good example would be Thai cuisine.