What Oolong Are You Drinking

Semi-oxidized tea
Ethan Kurland
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Wed Jul 04, 2018 5:36 am

Victoria, L.A. seems to be a good place to live for someone serious about drinking good tea with people who discern.....

I bought excellent medium-roasted TGY once only before I knew that it was such a good opportunity. (Shop in Pinlin closed unfortunately.) Good quality dark-roasted TGY seems easier to obtain, but only soon after it is produced.

I am most interested in degrees of oxidation, not roasting and/or aging. I do not know but feel that slightly varied amounts of oxidation can make drinking the same leaves (of high quality) very interesting as well as delicious. My palate seems on top of its game in this area.

For me: The taste of the roast can very easily be too dominant or the only taste truly prevalent often.

The best aged teas become a blend of flavors that is excellent & so smooth, drinkable, & durable, but for me, not always so interesting as fresh teas that put competing flavors in my mouth. And, how a 20-year old tea is better than a seven-year old, is not so discernable for me.

Discussion here led me to open a packet of FuShoushan. I need to remember not to quickly eat or drink after drinking it, as the FSS's aftertaste is great to have lingering for 30 minutes or more.
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Victoria
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Wed Jul 04, 2018 4:37 pm

Ethan Kurland wrote:
Wed Jul 04, 2018 5:36 am
Victoria, L.A. seems to be a good place to live for someone serious about drinking good tea with people who discern.....

I bought excellent medium-roasted TGY once only before I knew that it was such a good opportunity. (Shop in Pinlin closed unfortunately.) Good quality dark-roasted TGY seems easier to obtain, but only soon after it is produced.

I am most interested in degrees of oxidation, not roasting and/or aging. I do not know but feel that slightly varied amounts of oxidation can make drinking the same leaves (of high quality) very interesting as well as delicious. My palate seems on top of its game in this area.

For me: The taste of the roast can very easily be too dominant or the only taste truly prevalent often.

The best aged teas become a blend of flavors that is excellent & so smooth, drinkable, & durable, but for me, not always so interesting as fresh teas that put competing flavors in my mouth. And, how a 20-year old tea is better than a seven-year old, is not so discernable for me.

Discussion here led me to open a packet of FuShoushan. I need to remember not to quickly eat or drink after drinking it, as the FSS's aftertaste is great to have lingering for 30 minutes or more.
Ethan, your focus on oxidation levels is an interesting one, and I would say more difficult to discern than levels of roasting.
I am enjoying Origin Tea’s 2010 Traditional High Fire LiShan. It is difficult for me to perceive what level of oxidation was reached prior to roasting, possibly just partial oxidation as is normal for traditional LiShan. The liquor and wet leaf are super aromatic and complex, with sweet camphor musky maltiness. Roasted notes are fully transformed into malty sweetness and warmth. I suspect this LiShan went through several roasts over some period of time, add to that 9 years of aging and the results are stellar; rich, complex and transcendent.

Filled Mid 80's F1, Zini San-Zu 105ml shuiping with 8gr of leaf. Rich.

Origin 2010 Trad HighFire LiShan in Mid80's F1, Zini San-Zu 105ml ShuiPing.jpg
Origin 2010 Trad HighFire LiShan in Mid80's F1, Zini San-Zu 105ml ShuiPing.jpg (639.24 KiB) Viewed 251 times
Ethan Kurland
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Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:09 am

Victoria,

I am jealous of your palate & excellent command of language (e.g. "sweet camphor maltiness).

I wish that more levels of oxidation were available & that information about them was given. I do have one person say to me specific percentages but know there is a lot of guessing as he probably does it just for me. I also wish there was a constant amount of roasting (or total lack of roasting before various oxidation levels are reached) of the same tea to get to understand oxidation & hopefully enjoy the various levels of it.

However, the main thing is to have good tea to drink (of course). Fortunately, right now I do have quite a bit.

I also admire your discipline. To have tea from Origin still is amazing. Cheers
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Victoria
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Tue Jul 10, 2018 2:43 pm

Ethan, Very generous words. I agree with your idea that to experience side by side various levels of oxidation/ roasting would be interesting. Origin's 2010 High Fire LiShan was a gift from Ferg a few years ago. I suspect it was sold a bit aged.

Savoring TeaFul's buttery smooth and sweet LiShan. Jason really knows how to pick excellent oolong from Taiwan, their specialty. His Muzha and #18 and #21 are really rich as well.

TeaFul LiShan Taisuke Shiraiwa Seifu Yohei_1010042.jpg
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Victoria
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Wed Jul 18, 2018 8:44 pm

Into day two of extended steeps with several oolong from a mini tasting yesterday with Jason; Origin 2010 Dong Ding Competition, Origin Hualien Mixiang Red, LazyCat House Rougui 2017, and a house everyday red oolong he just brought from Taiwan. LazyCat Rougui stood up pretty well to A grade Origin teas, although it’s body was thinner and lighter. Jason actually preferred LazyCat’s lighter body, that got me thinking about standards of taste, personal preferences, and scales of excellence. It seems some teas reach a scale of excellence that most can agree are superior, while other teas might hit the B, B+, A-, mark for some, but not for everyone. Just musing about levels of excellence and personal preferences. Have you had many oolong that you would say reached A A+ level of excellence? Which ones?
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