Monday, May 24, 2010

Chicago Tea Garden Competition Grade Tie Guan Yin

Tie Guan Yin Competition Grade "Monkey Picked" Oolong

Did I mention that I love the Chicago Tea Garden? This is yet another tea sourced from David Lee Hoffman. This a lightly oxidized oolong tea that is rolled into tight little balls. The dry leaves were varying shades of deep green and had a lightly floral smell to them. I brewed this tea in a porcelain  gaiwan using 190 degree water and 30 second infusions. The resulting liquor was a deep gold color with a sweet aroma. I must have done at least eight steepings.

Even though I am an oolong fanatic, Tie Guan Yin is probably one of my least favorites. I often find the floral aspect of the flavor profile overwhelming. Because of this I’ve only had a handful that I have throughly enjoyed. All I can say about this one is wow. This is probably the best oolong I have ever tasted. The floral flavor was intense but delicate at the same time. It was also slightly vegetal without being bitter. This tea just kept giving in terms of the number of infusions. It was exactly what I needed on a nice spring day like today. I would definitely recommend this tea.