Rougui Oolong Tea from White Two Tea

Rougui_OolongTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  White Two Tea

Tea Description:  

Rougui [cinnamon] yancha [rock tea] is an oolong tea from the Fujian province of China.

Our Rougui is fragrant and smoky with a mineral finish. It is considered a medium roast.

Learn more about this tea here.

Learn more about White Two Tea’s Tea Club Subscription here.

Taster’s Review:

I’ll admit that I have less experience with Rougui Oolong teas than I do with other Oolongs like TieGuanYin and AliShan.  But I still enjoy them!

And this Rougui Oolong from White Two Tea is lovely!

I brewed it the same way I brew other Oolongs – in my gaiwan!  I measured a bamboo scoop of leaf into the bowl of the gaiwan, and then I poured in water heated to 180°F.  I did a 15 second rinse, and then infused the leaves for 45 seconds.  With each subsequent infusion, I added 15 seconds.  My first cup is the combination of the first two infusions.

And the first cup is delightfully fragrant.  It’s pleasantly sweet with notes of fruit and flower.  It’s very flavorful.  Usually, the first cup tends to be the lightest flavored cup that I enjoy of an Oolong experience, and that may be true of this tea as well, but I like that there’s still plenty of flavor to be experienced!

Sweet!  Hints of smoke in the distance.  The wording of the description lead me to believe that this would be smokier than it is – but the smoke notes are faint – I like that!  Woodsy tones marry with notes of stone fruit.  I taste sweet notes of peach and plum with hints of sour at mid-sip.  I also taste hints of mineral and light spice notes in the background.  It’s a wonderfully complex cuppa!

And that was just the first cup!  The second cup is even more delightful!  The flavors have become smoother now.  The sip is smooth from start to finish with a mild astringency at the tail – a slightly dry note.  I also pick up on a slight citrus-y note toward the finish.

While I experienced a slight ‘sour’ note from the fruit tones in that first cup, I find that those notes seem to be tapering.  The fruit is still an abundant taste, but this cup focuses on the sweetness of the fruit and there is very little noticeable sour note.

This tea just seems to get lovelier and lovelier the more you infuse it!

The third cup was sweeter and smoother than the first two.  I can really taste peach notes now.  I am still tasting hints (wisps!) of smoke.  The spice notes seem to stand out for me in this cup, so it’s like I’m tasting peach and spice.  Nice!

A really lovely Oolong!  This is the first Oolong that I’ve tried from White Two Tea, and it’s been a wonderful experience!

Da Hong Pao (Big Red Robe) Wuyi Rock Oolong from Teavivre

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Teavivre

Tea Description:

This wuyi Da Hong Pao Teavivre provides will be a perfect choice for people who want to discover Wuyi Rock Da Hong Pao teas or for oolong lovers that want to find a Da Hong Pao for their daily teas.  The tea presents characteristic such as its high and long lasted floral fragrance, smooth, rich, sweet and refreshing aftertaste.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This is such a lovely tea to be sipping right now:  It is so cold and wet outside, the kind of cold that gets into your bones and hangs in there, and it seems no matter what you do you just can’t get rid of that cold feeling!

Tea to the rescue!  This Wuyi Da Hong Pao Oolong to be specific.  The flavor is so warm with its toasty character that it seems to get right to that chill and warms me up.

The first couple of sips, I noticed a distinct mineral-y kind of tone, together with the warm, toasty, almost charcoal-y kind of flavor.  The mineral note and the charcoal note seem to go together seamlessly.  There is an undertone of sweetness that is honey-esque, but it is quite delicate, especially in these first two infusions.  There are also intriguing floral tones that almost seem like they don’t belong there, given the sort of rugged, roasty-toasty, mineral-y kind of flavors that met me at the introduction.  But these floral notes are so delightful, you want them at the party, even if they don’t seem to fit in quite so well at the beginning.

In subsequent infusions, I found that the mineral/charcoal tones seemed to soften as the floral notes began to emerge, and the honey-esque tone united with the flowery flavors so deliciously.   I found that with each new cup of this tea, new flavors were just waiting to be discovered.  As the mineral-y notes began to wane, I found that the background notes began to take on a more “woodsy” kind of flavor, deep and oaken, and this note seemed to add to the overall warmth of the cup.  I love that this tea stood up for a good eight infusions, making this a lovely cold autumn’s evening tea for me.

But then, Teavivre has never failed to provide me with just what I need when it comes to incredible flavor and quality.  They are one of the best, in my opinion!

Organic Shui Xian from Arbor Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Arbor Teas


Tea Description:

 Our organic Shui Xian Oolong hails from the Wuyi mountains in China’s Fujian province. This exquisite oolong is produced using the top three to four leaves on the branch. After wilting and bruising the leaves, they are hand-rolled into their final shape. When brewed, these dark green-brown leaves create an amber infusion with an exquisite floral fragrance that complements the tea’s sweetness (in fact, Shui Xian translates directly into “narcissus”). The taste is smooth and lightly sweet, with a subtle dryness reminding of pear skin, followed by a lightly baked aftertaste. As with most oolongs of this type it is moderately oxidized, ranging from 40% to 60%. Like other fine oolong teas, our Shui Xian Oolong may be infused a number of times, with each infusion revealing a new nuance of this tea’s complex flavor.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

This tea offers a very fruity flavor and is quite juicy. The roasted woody flavor is one of my favorite notes in oolong but it is so well complimented by the lighter plum flavors. I get far more plum in this cup than peach but regardless I do enjoy the juiciness of this tea. I actually almost choked on my first sip because the juiciness exploded like biting into a ripe plum! I was not expecting this out of such a darkly roasted oolong.

The aroma is lovely with nutty and earth notes working their way up to my senses. There is something in this aroma of must notes and forest floor.

The after taste lends toward the drier notes but it never quite gets so dry that it leaves your throat parched – the juiciness of the tea keeps that from happening.

I love roasty toasty oolong teas especially when they have that backed good flavor in them. The light and subtle sweetness does bring about a bakery essence to the taste.

Of course you have your rock mineral notes in here that are lovely and I do love mineral notes in tea. It comes over as quite refreshing along with the juicy plum flavors and reminds me of sitting along side a fresh running steam watching the water run over the rocks and pebbles within it.

A pleasing tea and from a company that also cares about the environment – can’t get better than that!

Wuyi Rock Oolong from Shanti Tea

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Shanti Tea

Company Description:

One of the purest teas available on the world market.

Organic Wuyi Rock Oolong is one of the purest teas available on the world market. This rare oolong hails from Mount Wuyi in Nanping Prefecture, Fujian, up along the border of Jiangxi Province. In 1999, UNESCO listed the mountain as a World Heritage Site in part owing to its outstanding biodiversity. According to the UN, Mount Wuyi is one of the world’s finest, intact, subtropical forests. Further complimenting the region’s reputation, Mount Wuyi is registered with the Chinese government as a biodiversity conservation zone. The climate of the region is relatively humid due to the fact that the mountain prevents cool air from entering the valley, and the presence of the 9 Bend River meandering through its valleys. Living with this subtropical paradise is an almost unaccountable number of species of flora and fauna. Many of the plan species living on the mountain are considered relics of a bygone age, no longer found anywhere else on the planet. In amongst this jewel of biodiversity grows the world famous organic rock tea. The tea bushes, like many other plant species, are ancient, having grown amongst the mountain’s rocky outcroppings for generations. Cultivation of the plants is almost impossible given the topography, so exceptional care is taken when handling and plucking the fresh tea shoots. The harvesters typically wear light cotton gloves when handling the leaves, which are harvested in small quantities so as not to tire the bushes. The fresh leaf is then allowed to naturally semi-ferment. The resulting flavor is at once rich, delicate, and laden with floral nuance.

Taster’s Review:

This is an outstanding Oolong tea.

The dry leaf has a nutty scent with woody tones.  As it brews, the nutty fragrance develops, but even stronger is a smoky aroma.  This worried me at first, because smoky teas and I don’t always get along… but really, once I tasted it I needn’t have worried.  The smoke flavor is there, but it is oh-so-subtle and it melds harmoniously with the roasted nutty flavor.

The tea has a charming sweetness to it with subtle notes of spice in the background.  There is also a distant fruit note that is a bit like peach, a typical characteristic of well-oxidized Oolongs such as this one.

I love the smooth, well-rounded flavor of this tea.  The mouthfeel is light and silky, but it lingers well into the aftertaste because there is very little astringency to this Oolong.

A truly wonderful Oolong – and the first tea I’ve tasted from Shanti Tea… if this tea is representative of what I have to look forward to from Shanti, I am very excited, indeed!

Elixir of Immortality from Cloudwalker Teas

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Oolong

Where to Buy:  Cloudwalker Teas

Company Description:

This truly is a beautiful tea… The ‘Elixir of Immortality’ or Bu Lao Dan is very special. This tea is produced on Wu Yi Mountain according to the traditional formula of an ancient Taoist sect. These Taoist renunciates believed that this tea would help to prolong their lives and aid in their practice of austerities. The processing of this tea is overseen by a Taoist master and takes between two to three years to complete. Basically it involves exposing the leaves to the sun and moonshine in certain places, for set periods of time, and then storing the leaves in large earthenware containers. This process of exposing and “resting” the leaves is repeated many times over the period of years, and the results are nothing short of remarkable. Those who have been to Wu Yi know that this is a very special place – the long time stronghold of Taoist and Buddhist sects. The experience of drinking this tea is something akin to drinking in the wisdom of this sacred Mountain. Much like the the nine peaks of Wu Yi, this tea is strong, enduring, and suffused with a subtle yet forceful power (subtle for some – not so subtle for others).

Taster’s Review:

Wow!  This tea brews up exceptionally dark.  Surprisingly dark for an Oolong tea – heck, it is even dark for a black tea!  It looks more like a Shu Pu-erh, rather than an Oolong.  In addition, the aroma of the brewed liquor has an earthy quality to it that reminds me of Pu-erh.

This is a very interesting tea.  I am tasting characteristics in this cup that remind me of an Oolong, a black tea, and a Pu-erh all in one.  I can taste a slightly earthy quality to it that gives it a Pu-erh kind of taste.  I can taste a light buttery flavor that makes way to a very smooth, silky mouthfeel – very Oolong-ish!  Then I taste a malty, almost smoky, baked kind of flavor to it too – that is very much like a black Assam (with maybe just a leaf or two of Lapsang Souchong!)

This is truly one of the most rewarding teas I’ve encountered in a long time.  I love the complexity.  It is so very different from any single tea that I’ve ever tried, and yet at the same time, it is very much like many different teas that I’ve tried!

On the Cloudwalker Teas website, this is listed as a “Cliff Tea“.  Here is some additional information about the Cliff Teas that are available from Cloudwalker Teas:

Cloudwalker Teas is pleased to be able to offer this selection of cliff teas by one of the most well known and regarded tea masters of Asia. Unfortunately we can’t tell you who he is. The master in question is a private man and says that he does not want to attract any more attention to himself, but simply hopes that more people outside his circle of students may be able to experience what constitutes a truly fine rock tea. A labour of love for this tea master, each year he personally travels to Wu Yi Mountain national park in China to oversee the harvesting, processing and packaging of these legendary teas. He works closely with a group of local producers at Wu Yi mountain, who hand roast the leaves. Hand roasted cliff teas are very rare, and Cloudwalker is very pleased to be the first western tea company to be able to offer teas of such high quality. This introductory selection of his rock teas is offered on a trial basis and under certain conditions, one being that they only be sold in small quantities to ensure that these rare and exquisite teas may be shared by as many people as possible. In drinking them one comes to realize very quickly why this love affair exists between this master and these teas, a love that all who taste them will certainly share.

This tea is a MUST TRY for all tea enthusiasts!