Country of Origin: Taiwan
Leaf Appearance: small, dark and tightly rolled
Steep time: 30 seconds
Water Temperature: 212 degrees
Preparation Method: porcelain gaiwan
Liquor: reddish amber
Tie Guan Yin is arguably one of the most famous oolong teas in the world. I have a love-hate relationship with it because I’m a not fan of lightly oxidized versions. A beautifully roasted Tie Guan Yin can be a beautiful thing though! It is thought to be a Chinese tea but Tie Guan Yin can be both a tea type and a cultivar. Daurim’s website explains that this Taiwanese grown tea originated from Anxi. Hong Xin Wai Wei Tao is the classic variety used for this type of oolong. I’ve enjoyed the other oolongs I’ve reviewed from Daurim so I was hopeful this tea was one I would enjoy.
The dry leaf was fairly dark in color. They were mostly dark brown but hints of green could be seen under bright lighting. The pellets were tightly rolled but not quite uniform in shape or size. Daurim doesn’t say for sure on their website but that can be an indication that the tea may have been rolled by hand rather than machines. They had a sweet, slightly smoky aroma. Hints of florals emerged when the leaves were added to a warmed gaiwan.
This tea brewed up a reddish shade of amber with nice clarity. The taste started out soft and sweet with a surprising malty note. Fruity notes of peach and a mild vegetal character came to the forefront as the leaves opened up. It was smooth with hardly any astringency and a clean mouthfeel. Later infusions had a slightly metallic finish but that aspect wasn’t unpleasant at all. The roast was masterfully done. It did not hide the tea but enhanced it by contributing a subtle nuttiness in the background. This was a warming tea, perfect for a late evening session on a chilly day.
Have you ever tried Daurim Hong Xin Tie Guan Yin? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!