Li Shan High Mountain Oolong from Green Terrace Teas

LiShanHighMountainTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Green Terrace Teas

Tea Description:

Li Shan, or “Pear Mountain”, is named after the abundant pear orchards that originally occupied the region. In addition to its rich soil, Li Shan’s high altitude maintains a cool and moist climate that is ideal for creating superior quality tea. Our spring harvest was grown at an elevation of about 2,000 meters, or over 6,500 ft! Tea from Li Shan has a very high demand due to its limited supply and superior quality. Floral and fruity in character, this tea also has a very clean, soft mouth feel and evokes exotic flavors such as mango and tropical fruit. Can be steeped multiple times without losing flavor.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Yes!  I love Li Shan Oolong Tea!  And this Li Shan from Green Terrace Teas is OUTSTANDING!

Since this is a Li Shan, I grabbed my Yi Xing Mug and I combined the first five infusions (I steeped the tea in my gaiwan) following a 15 second rinse into the first mug full of deliciousness.

I measured out one of my bamboo scoops full of the tightly wound, deep forest green pellets and placed them in the bottom of my “easy” gaiwan – so called because it has a “straining” lid, a spout, and little “stump” handles to make it easy to handle when there’s hot liquid inside.

I poured in the hot water (I usually go with 180°F for Oolong teas, and I saw no reason to not go with that temperature today), and after 15 seconds, I strained the liquid (this was the rinse).  Then I steeped the first infusion for 45 seconds and added 15 seconds onto each subsequent infusion.

And mmm!  When you have a Li Shan, you can expect a creamy texture and  a sweet, floral taste.  But there are always little nuances that make one Li Shan Oolong offered by one tea purveyor different than another Li Shan Oolong.  I’m not sure exactly why that is, but, as the description above suggests, this has a fruity note to it that’s almost like tropical fruit.  And I’m getting those tropical fruit notes.

The flavor is sweet and smooth.  It’s not screaming out “mango” to me, but it has that luscious sweetness of a mango with notes that are reminiscent of the tropical fruit.  I can taste subtle vanilla tones and this adds a pleasing creaminess to the cup and it softens the floral tones.

LiShanHighMountain2I like that the vegetal notes here are really quite subdued.  It doesn’t have a really strong “green” taste to it, but in the distance, I pick up on those gentle vegetative flavors.

And like many Oolong teas, this one offers quite a few infusions.  I got ten infusions out of this tea (five infusions in my first cup and five in the second).  The second cup was not quite as creamy as the first, and I noticed more of the floral notes and subtle vegetal notes emerging in the second cup.  But this cup wasn’t sharp or bitter the way that floral and/or vegetal notes can sometimes be.  It still tasted wonderfully smooth.

It’s still sweet and fruit-like with notes of tropical fruit.  Again, I’m not tasting anything distinctly mango but it has notes that sometimes evoke thoughts of sweet mango, and in this second cup, I am also tasting gentle tangy fruit notes too.  Nothing that makes me ready to pucker, but, it does add an interesting contrast to the sweeter notes in the cup.

A REALLY good Li Shan!  I have tried a few teas from Green Terrace thus far and I’ve been a fan of what I’ve tasted from them.  This is a company that I can stand behind and recommend to my readers with confidence.

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