Monday, October 18, 2010

2006 Taiwan WuYi

This is another sample I received from Gingko, of Life In Teacup.

I did not find any information about this tea on Her blog or in the store description other than it was picked in the spring of 2006 in Nantuo, Taiwan, and it is a traditional heavy roast tea.

I could guess that the reason that it is referred to as a WuYi tea is because that the cultivar is specific to the WuYi region in China. Gingko may be able to fill us in if I have stated an untruth.

To the tea...(no pun intended).

The dry leaf had a very scattered aroma.
I sensed dried apricots, roasted banana and a woody tree bark sort of smell. This in itself was intriguing. Roasted banana is definitely a new one for me.

The liquor was . . . completely different.

Caramel was the dominant aroma and in the midst of that sugar sweetness, I could pick out the distinct smell of cinnamon raisin bread fresh out of the toaster.
That is one of the first times a tea has changed so suddenly on me.

I did not quite know what to expect as far as taste was concerned . . .

A thick, rich, caramel sweetness engulfed my palate. The syrup was almost sticky sweet.
The goop left hints of toffee, coffee and banana.
To finish it off, the aftertaste closely resembled fig newtons and butter.

The second infusion . . . very different, once again.
Roasted banana became the dominant taste, and of course, the tea was as thick as ever.
I can equate the texture somewhat to chicken broth mixed with a bit of corn starch.

Third infusion;
the sweetness turns more to wood.
The goopy, sloppy texture still remains.
Aftertaste; figs and dates.

a very unique vegetal taste appears.
Leafy; think bean sprouts. The next taste; red potatoes.

This tea is throwing me around like Goliath would a ragdoll.

The fifth infusion;
much more leafy.
The vegetal taste is quite powerful and has an aftertaste similar to matcha.

I can't take much more of this tea. The thickness affects my stomach.

Gingko mentioned on the site that this tea is fairly cheap.
I think that this tea would be money very well spent.
This was a memorable session for me and I am thinking about ordering the tea in a large quantity. It is truly an experience. I have never been so baffled by a tea. The curve-balls of the flavor and the thick texture really impressed me.
Thank you once again Gingko.



  1. A thick tea liquor?

    I. want. this. :O

    Also, the varying flavours sound pretty cool. Perhaps I should order some of this. The only oolong I really have on me right now is the 2010 Red Tea Dan Cong, and I would like to stock up a bit.

  2. Fox,

    This would be a good tea to have a pretty good amount of. It is cheap, and good.
    One of the best tea deals in my opinion!
    Especially for a lover of oolong like yourself.

  3. This is the tea I used to make most of my "tea grapefruit" :D

    I've seen much more expensive aged tea that's much better than this one or not better at all than this one. So I think this tea can serve as a good benchmark.

  4. Gingko,

    When searching your blog for more information on this tea I read about the grapefruit! Very interesting!
    Yes, this tea would be a good starting point for aged oolongs.
    And also, is it called a WuYi because it was made with the WuYi cultivar? I want to be sure.

  5. This tea really sounds interesting to taste.
    I might add it to my list.

  6. Ice,

    I found it to be quite the session! Definitely worth it!

  7. It's muggle again.

    Wu Yi cultivar is not so common here now, so why did you taste the real flavor itself? :) And by the tea knowledge we have learned, this is not Oolong tea neither Aged Oolong tea any more, it's blended tea.

    In Taiwan we have a local Hakka style tea, people put the tea into a type of orange with/out other Chinese herbal, (absolutely without banana) and then roast the whole orange. That is only drinking for healthy issue. Besides, the tea liquid won't be "sticky"!! Sorry! :)

  8. Muggle,

    I am a bit confused...Are you saying that this specific tea is a blend? Or that this tea is mostly drunk as a blend?
    It seemed to portray all of the qualities found in a typical pearled oolong, just with some slight variations of taste and texture!
    Once again, I thank you for adding to the ever growing discussion on this blog! =]

  9. I didn't taste this tea so I wouldn't have more clues to imagine how and what to make this tea. But from the last 2 photos, I was told that the liquid and leaves were turbid. If they were not infused something while processing, then probably the skills of making tea were different. Above were my own opinions by judging from the photos, I apologize if they are too harsh. However, it was nice to know that you could taste this rare cultivar in States.

  10. Muggle,

    Not at all too harsh! I just wanted to clarify your statement to make sure I understood it properly!
    I think if the tea was infused with something, it would have been easy to tell from the taste.
    Thank you for clarifying!