Oolong is a special tea that is often overlooked in favour of more traditional blends- but if you've never tried it, you're in for a treat!
Originating in China and primarily produced in a few Chinese provinces and Taiwan, oolong is made from tea leaves that have been partially oxidised and twisted to produce a tea that is somewhere between more robust black tea and delicate green tea. Although it looks different to black, green and white teas, oolong comes from the same plant: the leaves of Camelia sinensis.
Oolong has long been prized for its delicate and complicated flavour in its native country, where its name roughly translates as 'black dragon'. However, while some oolong teas can be more like black teas (like our Formosa Oolong), others can be much lighter and fresher, more akin to green tea like Ti Kuan Yin, the 'Iron Goddess' tea.
As oolong is more delicate than other teas, we'd recommend following brewing instructions on the packaging carefully, as brewing times and temperatures can vary. However, preparation is generally relatively simple: most require water at a temperature just shy of boiling at around 85-90 degrees, so that you don't 'burn' the leaves and impact the flavours.Oolong is unusual in that it is usually steeped for a relatively short amount of time- around 2-3 minutes. Because of this, it can be steeped more than once (although we wouldn't recommend more than three steepings per serving, as the flavours can be lost). This is because the leaves unfurl slightly every time they are brewed, each new brew offering a slightly different flavour.
Although some oolong blends can cope with milk being added, we recommend that it is best enjoyed without in order to fully enjoy the taste.
Wherever your tea preference lies, we're sure you'll find an oolong to suit!
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