Our spring 2022 batch of Li Shan High Mountain Oolong Tea is now on the shelf! Li Shan is a place name that means Pear Mountain. Li Shan High Mountain Tea is the most prestigious name of Taiwan Tea overall. It is home to the highest elevation tea farms on the island of Taiwan, and the climate is ideal for producing the best quality leaf — in the world, arguably!
The spring growing season provided sufficient rain, and the average daily temperature remained lower than normal all the way up to harvest time. This is conducive to produce leaf material with more substance. Above we can see the slight differences in dried leaf nuggets. The batch on the left has the largest nuggets, the middle batch is slightly smaller, and the batch on the right is the smallest. The size and coloration of the dried leaf nuggets generally indicates the maturity of the leaf. The appearance of the dried leaves is the first assessment of the overall quality.
Secondly, the appearance of the brewed tea can be assessed. The brewed tea should be luminescent and transparent. Transparency reflects how uniformly and thoroughly the leaves were depleted of moisture. The gradation of color usually indicates the degree of oxidation. We found the middle brew to be again to be a nice balance between the batches on the left and right.
And finally, the brewed leaves can be observed for their uniformity in size and coloration, as well as their constitution and suppleness. The unfurled leaves basically gives us full view of what can be surmised in viewing the tightly rolled dried leaves. The largest stems are found in the batch on the left, followed by the middle batch, and smallest on the riight.
Of course the most significant factors are in the experience of the aromatic and flavor profiles. We found the middle batch to be the nicest in terms of significant degree of oxidation, floral heady aroma, and a well balance flavor profile.
Check out the tasting video for the live experience of this batch of tea, as well as footage of the farm that produced it!
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