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Lychee

Scarlet Honey Oolong Tea from Dachi Tea

Why has it taken me so long to review Scarlet Honey Oolong Tea from Dachi Tea?  Because it’s one to ponder.  Because it’s complex.  Because it’s IMPRESSIVE.  I could go on and on!  This Scarlet Honey Oolong Tea from Dachi Tea is for the BOOKS, folks!

Right away I have to share with you the AROMA experience of this Scarlet Honey Oolong Tea from Dachi Tea!  It’s UNREAL!  Keep in mind that this is NOT flavored.  This is a natural aroma!  The dry leaves kept me guessing for a while.  It smelled like sour fruit.  After minutes of thinking about it I came to the conclusion of sour cherries!  Once infused for about 2 or 3 minutes the sour cherry aroma pushed the envelop a bit more and seemed to morph into a sour cherry and lychee combo.  The cooler the infused tea got the more wine-like the nose was!

As for the taste of Scarlet Honey Oolong Tea from Dachi Tea it continued to please!  It was an incredibly smooth, sweet oolong with slightly sour fruit and honey notes underneath.  I’ve now enjoyed this both hot and cold and I don’t know which one I like better!  Could Scarlet Honey Oolong Tea from Dachi Tea be one of my FAVORITE straight up oolongs of the year?  Perhaps!

 


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Oolong Tea
Where to Buy: Dachi Tea Co.
Scarlet Honey Oolong Tea from Dachi Tea SMDescription:

Naturally bug-bitten and carefully bruised, the high-mountain tea leaves are then deeply oxidized, rolled into scarlet black beads and then slow baked, resulting in a tea with bursting summer fruits sweetness amid woodsy wisps which dance across the tongue. From the first to the final sip, velvety swells of pure honey remain on the upper palate and a cherry and lychee aftertaste lingers, making this tea as captivating as it is complex.Rare in the literal meaning of the word, the batch size of this oolong is limited to the consistency of the weather during the days of picking. All of the leaves must be in a similar state of life and energy as the process starts. To Mr. Yeh, consistency is what gives this tea its tantalizing depth. This is a shining example of the delicacy that can be achieved when tea leaves grown in an alpine climate are combined with thoughtful and patient work. It’s a divine confluence of climate, cultivar and craftsmanship. We couldn’t resist including it in the collection.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Lychee Burst Black from The Persimmon Tree Tea Company

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Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy: The Persimmon Tree Tea Company (On Hiatus)

Tea Description:

Lychee Burst tea is a fruitful blend of lychee essence and organic, black loose-leaf tea. It steeps a sweet infusion; with delicate notes of apricot, osmanthus and ripe pear. Bring out the flavor with rock sugar, and pour over ice for a refreshing change to regular iced tea.

Learn more about this tea on Steepster!

Taster’s Review:

Recently I received a sample of this tea from a tea friend in the mail! I didn’t even realize that The Persimmon Tree Tea Company offered a black lychee tea, but I was certainly excited to learn that they do and be able to try it. The last black lychee tea I fell in love with, The Tea of Kings, was from RiverTea so I can’t buy it anymore. I need a solid replacement.

My thoughts about this cold brew are that the flavor level of the lychee and black base are pretty equal, which is how I feel it should be. The black base is brisk, clean and full bodied with malty notes and slightly more floral notes. It reminds me vaguely of a high grown Ceylon? The lychee is juicy and realistic and doesn’t taste overly floral or chemical which is a trap that flavour often falls into with lower quality lychee teas. I taste the pear notes a little too, but they’re fairly flat and certainly not the focal point of the blend.

I don’t think this is my new lychee black to keep on hand, but it’s definitely one of the better ones I’ve had the pleasure of tasting. If you’re looking for a black lychee tea, my suggestion would be to start here after The Persimmon Tree’s hiatus is over.

Rose de Mai Oolong from Dammann Freres

rose-de-maiTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy: Dammann Freres (However it’s not currently listed)

Tea Description:

“Rose de Mai” is a subtle blend of the vegetal notes of a spring oolong tea, to those fresh, bright and dazzling of a 1st press rose essential oil extracted from a rose of exception. A well-balanced tea for lovers of resolutely flowery notes.

Learn more about this tea on Steepster.

Taster’s Review:

Since I haven’t done one in a while, I decided that I’d do a blind tasting with this blend! Obviously it’s got rose in it, but I wanted to see what I noticed by drinking my cold brew prior to do any reading on it. I actually had some interesting results this time around:

My immediate observation was that this was a highly floral from the rose but also from the natural floral notes of the greener oolong base; specifically I thought I picked up notes of both orchid and sweet jasmine. There were a few sips where the intensity of all the floral elements felt a little overwhelming and I definitely think those wary of floral teas in general will find this too much, but overall I think they were all pretty well balanced/in check.

The big surprised was that throughout the entire cold brew I kept tasting the same juicy fruit note that I thought tasted pretty obviously of lychee. I was quite surprised when I finally did look up the tea ingredients only to see that there’s no added lychee flavouring. For me, that flavour was unmistakably present. I suppose, since lychee is quite a floral fruit, all of the other floral components of this tea could have contributed to the flavour, though.

Regardless, I thought this was a really pleasant cold brew; quite refreshing and thankfully with flavours other than a flat, monotone rose note. I’d definitely revisit this one, perhaps trying it hot instead of cold brewed.

Tropical Paradise Green from Koni Tea & Organic

geisha_greenTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy: Koni Tea & Organic

Tea Description:

In a world where beauty is paramount,This premium green tea with jasmine & lychee fruit is the perfect elixir for your temple of beauty. Rich in antioxidants for healthy, beautiful skin.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I have been drinking cold brew teas like crazy.  It just seems way to hot to drink hot brewed tea right now.  When you get heat index of 106, iced tea is what you are craving.  I’ve also been craving jasmine teas like you wouldn’t believe.  Pretty crazy.  I can’t seem to get enough.  So the other day when I was looking for a tea to drink, this one instantly screamed- Pick Me!

Koni Tea & Organic is a newer tea shop to me.  I have really enjoyed the teas that I have tried from them including Kick the Coffee, a fun butterscotch flavored tea.  So far, I haven’t had a tea I haven’t enjoyed from them.

This particular tea is full of jasmine flowers.  The fragrance just made me happy.  Beautiful jasmine with that green tea undertone.  I couldn’t wait to steep this up.  I brewed this up as a cold brew (overnight in the fridge) and started my day with a nice sized cup of this.  So good.  Sweet, buttery green goodness, with just a ever so slight floral taste.  The jasmine complimented the green tea nicely and didn’t overwhelm the cup like other green jasmine teas have for me in the past.  I’m not sure what the lychee fruit flavor is that was also part of the description of the tea but I’m thinking maybe it added to the sweet flavor I was getting.  Regardless, this tea was perfect to start my day off with.

Later in the day, I did try this as hot brewed tea.  Prepared this like a green tea, this flavor was just as good as the flavor I fell in love with as a cold brew. This tea is such a great versatile one.  My stash of it is unfortunately gone, but this will be one I will need to get more of.  Hopefully in a few weeks I will drink down what I currently have so I can to a little shopping trip at Koni Tea & Organics.  So many teas of theirs I want to try!

Lychee Konnyaku from Ette Tea

lycheekonnyakuTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black/Green

Where to Buy:  Ette Tea

Tea Description:

Our newest tea formula of Jasmine green, black tea, cranberries, lychee pieces & lily blossoms. Sweet tasting & tangy as the Japanese jelly dessert, Lychee Konnyaku tea provides the added malty texture and body for the gourmet tea lover.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This, along with the Mango Sticky Rice blend that I’ve yet to try, is the Ette Tea blend I’m most excited about tasting and reviewing. I absolutely adore lychee in just about anything, but especially in tea. Plus, cranberry is also one of my favourite fruit flavours in tea so the pairing of the two got me really, really excited. It’s also a pairing that I haven’t seen done before which was really cool too.

Dry; this has some really robust smelling lychee. It’s also fairly floral which should be expected given that there’s jasmine from the green tea and also the addition of lily, but lychee is a very floral tasting fruit too so it comes from that as well. I don’t see as many cranberries in the leaf as I want their to be, though I did make sure that what I measured out for my mug had at least one included.

Wow; this smelled heavenly when it was also steeped up! It’s a very strong lychee aroma; definitely the most powerful aspect of the tea, but there’s also a really soft, soothing jasmine smell backed up by other floral elements like lily and maybe also orchid. It’s actually hard to pick out specific notes from either the black or the green tea used though. I can also smell the cranberry, but only slightly.

Thankfully the cranberry is a bit more noticeable in the taste; it cuts through pretty clearly in the start of the sip with some sweetness but also some tartness that reminds me of cranberry jelly like you’d have around Thanksgiving. However, the very lush taste of the lychee and jasmine over takes it early on leaving me feeling just slightly cheated. I want more cranberry because while it’s so different to me to see it paired with lychee the two flavours go together really well!

The lychee is juicy and rich and reminds me a lot of actual lychee or ‘cocktail’ lychee that’s been canned in its own sweetened juices. It’s mouthwatering and strong as a flavour. I can see where, paired with the sweetness of the cranberry, this could get a little too sweet but thankfully there’s the soothing presence of jasmine that brings this back down to a reasonable level and keeps it distinctly flavoured but smooth and relaxing too.

Also, now that it’s steeped I think the base teas come through just slightly more; the first half of the mug seemed to have a really light vegetal taste to it that was brought more into focus when you concentrated on the jasmine but the slightly malty black base was more present in the aftertaste along with the lingering flavour of lychee, and especially present with the last few tiny sips from the mug when everything had cooled down.

There’s definitely room for improvement, but overall this was a really impressive and well executed tea and I’m absolutely kicking myself for just getting 10g! I’ve now tried 3/5 samples and this is definitely my favourite so far. This company has yet to really disappoint me!