Oolong Tea

Oolong is a semi-oxidized tea. On the oxidization scale, it sits between green tea, which does not undergo withering/oxidization and black tea, which relies on this process to produce its unique flavors and appearance. The result is that oolong is unlike any other variety and perfectly blends the freshness of green with the depth of black.

It’s not just the oxidization process either. A high-quality oolong tea like the ones available from our Taiwanese tea masters is produced from specific cultivars. These plants are chosen for their unique properties and their ability to make an exceptional tea.

The degree of oxidization can also vary greatly with oolong tea, and this is one of the reasons why the flavor differs so considerably. Some have a very mild and sweet flavor, possessing notes of grass and honey. Others have a roasted flavor profile. The range of flavors make for a very versatile drink. It’s also one that can be enjoyed without or with milk—a dedicated oolong enthusiast might argue against the use of milk, but that’s usually how the drink is consumed in the west.

Some of the best-known and most celebrated oolong tea is produced in Taiwan. The climate and elevation allows for various tea varieties to flourish, including Dongfang, Dong Ding, Lishan, and Black Oolong, the latter of which has a rich and complex flavor that has been likened to roasted coffee and dark chocolate.

Oolong tea typically has more caffeine than green tea and less than black. The ideal temperature for brewing this tea also sits between these other two varieties at around 85 degrees Celsius. The leaves are usually balled, and they unfurl when they’re steeped, releasing their complex flavors and giving the tea a unique golden color.