Peter Guagy is a friend of ours who has a great wine background and is excessively talented at describing his experience of tea. Iron Goddess of Mercy oolong
The leaves are dark and twisted into half-balls of oolong goodness. Light liquor with green to yellow tinge. The nose has a grassy, toasted rice quality. On the palette a toasted, oily and wood like qualities, or that of dried fruit. This tea feels full-bodied on the mouth with a heavier, feel of a pile of wet fall leaves, with darker slight-floral undertones and an elemental touch of incense. Rather than being sharp, the tannic acid is dull and yet gives the tea substantial structure and body.
Associations, a walk through the woods on a fall day, rotting tree limbs and wet leaves perfume the air. There is a feeling of being well bundled up on a brisk day. This tea is serious and does not let you take it lightly, but you will be rewarded with a rich earthy experience.
The leaves are tightly wound and appear to be almost braided. Light liquor. Nose has a bright greenish floral note with a white oily nut. On the palette it has the delicate forward tannins that give it a green apple like sharp quality. The mid-palette is rich with a fuller body than one may expect, but it still dances to music of a higher key. The finish is sweet and candied with a slight hint of coconut milk that lingers on and on.
This tea is a delight and brings a sense of joy to one’s heart. It is bright and cheerful, but like a smart child –it asks deeper questions than one would expect from one so innocent. Spend some time with h this one and it will take you to happy places.
Monkey Picked oolong
The leaves are twisted and curled into small dark green balls. Light Liquor. The tea has a lovely nose of mixed Asian spices, a perfumed cedar box and orchid undertones. The is a gentle mouth feel and a roundness on the palette. This tea is mid-toned – no bright acidity and no deep earthiness, but rather a light white asparagus on the finish. A little leafy, a little toasted and a little nutty. But, overall a very pleasant experience.
Maybe, it is the name, or perhaps the damp hints of incense, earth and flowers, that made me think of a tropical rainforest. I did not hear the monkey’s howl, but perhaps the historic name lingers on in the essence of this tea.
Pouchong Transitional oolong
Being a transitional oolong, the leaves are half-curled. Between a green tea and an oolong. The liquor has a light green to yellowish translucent tinge. On the nose this tea is aromatic with herbaceous floral notes. In the mouth, it is reserved with a toasted rice delicacy and well integrated green tea type tannins.
This is a very easy, light tea that does not demand too much attention. It just wants to be enjoyed without too much focus. A perfect accompaniment to a conversation with a friend.