Batch 91 of the Eco-Cha Tea Club is an Award Winning Alishan Jin Xuan Oolong Tea. Learn the background on this tea and how we sourced it HERE. This tea received Gold Medal Award at the Meishan Township Farmers' Association spring 2023 competition. We chose to share this tea with the tea club for its flavor profile more than the award it received, however. We wanted to give our club members a chance to experience a top quality Alishan Jin Xuan as a light-medium roast Oolong. Roasted Jin Xuan is much less known than its unroasted cousin — most commonly known as Milk Oolong. We wanted to let people know what Jin Xuan can be when it is made with skill and expertise.
Our friend who is a top competition player, sourced these leaves based on their uniformity in both maturity and oxidation. Only leaves that meet these fundamental qualifications can be properly roasted to achieve the competition quality standard. He then gleaned them of any excess stem material and/or discolored leaf material in preparation for roasting. The leaves were roasted 3 times, with a rest between each session. The art of roasting is essentially in the assessment of the leaves, and this assessment is multi-faceted. It includes the growing season, each step of processing, and ultimately — how they brew. Fine tuning the roasting methods based on this ongoing assessment is the mastery of this art.
These leaves were roasted to a degree that clearly expresses a roasted quality, while maintaining a vibrant character that comes from their original composition. They brew up a buttery, pastry aroma with notes of graham crackers and cashews in the flavor profile. These qualities are well integrated with a fresh, zingy character that comes from a mildly bitter quality. The buttery, toasty, grainy notes stimulate the palate in a way that makes you want to keep sipping and salivating!
The brewed leaves most clearly exhibit the fact that they were delicately roasted in a way that significantly transformed the flavor of the brewed tea without obviously affecting their physical appearance. It's this subtle chemistry that adds both value and intrigue to the original character of high quality Jin Xuan Oolong Tea. Watch the tasting video for the full assessment on these leaves and how they brew!
LET US KNOW!
Please post any questions or comments you may have in the comments section below!
If you enjoyed this post and would like to hear more about the specialty tea industry here in Taiwan, follow us on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram and please subscribe to our newsletter. Subscribe now and get US$5 off your first order.