Today we are taking a sip with The Persimmon Tree Tea Company's Bao Zhong, (also goes by the name Pouchong) a very lightly oxidized, curly leaf, oolong. This tea runs the risk of sneaking into green tea territory because depending on the specific Bao Zhong, it can be oxidized anywhere from 8-12% which really is not a lot. I admit to only having a little experience with this type of oolong (having only had three different ones) so I am happy to experiment more with it. The aroma is gently floral, like you expect from a 'greener' oolong, but much more delicate. There are notes of lily, lilac, and honeysuckle, it reminds me of spring rather than a heady orchid filled conservatory.
The brewed leaves are immensely floral, so much honeysuckle and lilac, I feel like I am standing in the best garden ever, since those are two of my favorite flowers. It borders on the heady, but those are such light smelling flowers that it is not overwhelming. The liquid is also floral, lots of honeysuckle nectar sweetness with a hint of creaminess, it is delightfully delicate and sweet.
Ah, ok, that tea is exactly what I needed! It is light and sweet with a very clean floral quality, it tastes like honeysuckle nectar, sun warmed and creamy. I often lament that honeysuckles do not produce enough nectar on those days I when I collect the tiny drops of nectar from a handful of flowers, this tea can give you the effect without all the work. There is a hint of greenness at the end of the sip and the aftertaste has a lingering floral quality.
The aroma of the second steep is really quite heady, honeysuckle and lilac is present but there is also now a strong orchid presence that is pretty intense. The mouthfeel is delightfully smooth to the point of creaminess, the taste is also pretty creamy, with a slight chestnut nuttiness to it. Of course there are floral notes, heady orchid and sweet honeysuckle which start strong and stay around till the finish.
Man, the aroma is still so intensely floral so heady that it is almost a little too much for me, clearly I am too weak for such a powerful orchid, lilac, lily, and honeysuckle powerhouse. The taste, surprisingly, is mellowing out, it is buttery and a bit green with a tiny hint of mineral at the finish. It is rather clean and refreshing with a dryness at the end. This is a tea I could see myself craving, but not necessarily wanting as an everyday tea. Those days when winter is harsh and I want spring flowers, or I am in the garden and want to reflect my environment in my cup, or even like today when I am wanting a clean, floral tasting tea to soothe me, those are the days I will want this tea.
|In case you are wondering what robe induced bliss looks like|