Leaf Type: Oolong
Where to Buy: Butiki Teas
Our 1991 Da Ye Aged Oolong is a 22 year old spring harvested tea from Nantou, Taiwan. This rare tea is oxidized between 20-30% and charcoal roasted. Da Ye Oolong is uncommon today since this tea has a lower production volume. Our 1991 Da Ye Aged Oolong is sweeter and creamier than our 2003 Reserve Four Season Oolong. Notes of roasted chestnut, bark, fresh butter, honey suckle, and cinnamon can be detected. Due to the age of this tea, some mineral notes may also be detected. This tea has a silky mouth feel and is sweet and buttery.
Learn more about this tea here.
I haven’t had a lot of experiences with aged Oolong teas, but I have tried a few and I have fallen in love with the depth of flavor that I enjoy with an aged Oolong, and this 1991 Da Ye Aged Oolong Tea from Butiki Teas might just be one of the very best that I’ve tried yet.
I prepared this tea the way I typically prepare an Oolong – in my gaiwan! First, I do a quick “rinse” of the leaves by steeping the leaves for 15 seconds in hot water and then straining the tea and discarding it. Then I steeped the first infusion for 45 seconds, and added 15 seconds to each subsequent infusion.
I combined the first two infusions into one cup for my first cup of this aged Oolong. This first cup I would describe as “raw” in that it had a somewhat earthy taste to it. Notes of wood … but not so much of a charcoal-y note. The chestnut flavor was just starting to develop in this first cup, as was the notes of sweet butter. It was a little lighter in flavor than the subsequent cups, but, it still was really quite enjoyable. I didn’t really notice much of the spice notes that were suggested in the above description, nor any of the floral notes.
My second cup (infusions 3 & 4) was absolutely delightful. I could really taste the roasted chestnut here. It tastes like freshly roasted chestnuts! Notes of wood and butter, with a slight caramel-y undertone that melds in a really unique and delicious way with the charcoal notes which are now really coming through nicely. The aforementioned earthy tones are still there but they have subsided quite a bit, filling out the background rather than standing in the forefront.
The third cup (infusions 5 & 6) was a little lighter than the second, but not quite as light as the first. I still taste the charcoal notes, and some mineral notes are starting to emerge now. I am also tasting the cinnamon notes that the description mentioned. This cinnamon note lingers in the aftertaste. It’s quite interesting! Still nutty, although not quite as distinctly “roasted chestnut.” Also emerging now are more of the floral tones, but they still remain part of the background for the most part, so if you’re one who avoids Oolong teas because you find them too flowery, this one would definitely be more to your liking, I think.
The second cup was definitely my favorite of the three … but the third cup was also really delightful so I do recommend taking this tea through it’s many flavorful infusions to enjoy the most of this tea exploration. I’m really glad I decided to try this tea! What a wonderfully memorable tea it is!