Lugu Competition Dong Ding Oolong Tea Tasting Notes | Eco-Cha Tea Club
Batch 72 of the Eco-Cha Tea Club is a Lugu Competition Dong Ding Oolong Tea. This tea type is one of the top three most famous Taiwan Teas and was prepared for one of the largest and most prestigious Oolong Tea competitions in the world. So we thought it's representing as a specialty Taiwanese Tea!
The name of the competition is included to designate it as competition grade tea, i.e. tea that was prepared for this competition. To meet the quality standard for the Lugu Farmers' Association Dong Ding Oolong Tea Competition, the leaves must be sufficiently oxidized in order to be suitable for medium roasting. The leaves must also be quality stock that was hand-picked in either spring or winter. The competition entries undergo extensive scrutinization, and almost half of all entries are disqualified. The 55% or so that get entered are then graded into several tiers of awards.
The flavor profile of this competition standard can vary to an extent, but it must exhibit quality leaf that was processed with skill and care. The basic characteristics of Lugu Competition Tea are a rich, robust, yet smooth flavor profile that is a balanced composition of sweet, bitter, astringent, aromatic and has a lasting finish that is both heady and exceptionally satisfying. The individual aromatic and flavor notes can include caramel, toasted grains, fruit compote, pipe tobacco, fire roasted yams... the list goes on! It's a complex and full flavored tea!
Given that these leaves have been well groomed, meaning that they have been destemmed and sorted to glean the prime leaf material from the crop, less leaves can be used in brewing. While we generally recommend a 1:15 leaf to water ratio for most rolled leaf Oolongs, we suggest a 1:17 or so ratio for Gongfu style brewing. We've really enjoyed varying our brewing methods with this tea, as it behaves differently with each one. It does quite well Grandpa style as well. We used 10g of leaves in a 500mL mug, filled it with boiling temp water, and drank it until it got a bit strong, then just added room temp water from there on. We got at least two full mugs worth of deliciously brewed tea!
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With the arrival of our spring batch of Taiwan Dong Ding Oolong Tea, we were inspired to brew it alongside our Traditional Dong Ding Oolong as well as our current edition of the Eco-Cha Tea Club — which also happens to be a Traditional Dong Ding Oolong. All three teas were harvested this spring from the same community in Lugu, Taiwan.