dinsdag 18 juni 2013

Teamania Thai Oolong

Teamania.ch was so kind to sent me 3 samples of their Thai oolong. I'm always open-minded when it comes to tasting things, so why not give it a go. Thai oolong seems to have a bad name, mainly because it is sold as Taiwanese oolong. I believe that Thai tea can stand on its own, they just need some time to develop their own 'signature'. All of the tea's below are of the 'Royal Project' which offers new oppertunities to farmers to minimize the opium production, not only in tea but also fruits, coffee etc... All of these products are said to be grown organic.
Correction: My humble apologies, it seems that I've been mistaken. These teaproducers started under the royal project but are completely independent family bussines right now.

From these 3 samples there was 1 I liked, 1 that was ok and one I didn't like at all.

The first one is named 'Oolong Black pearls' and is from Doi Mae Salong, Provinz Chiang Rai, Nordthailand. It says it was made from the jinxuan cultivar and oxidated for 100%. I'll make it short on this one: aggressive, overwhelming with an almost synthetical flowery taste. No, this is not my cup of tea. Luckily the other samples are a lot better than this one.

The next one is from the 4 seasons cultiver and the most 'expensive' from the bunch. It's from the same area and is made in the gao shan style with a light roast. It has a nice thick vegetal body with a longering flowery aftertaste. Later on it becomes a bit more fruity with an apricote aftertaste. Quite nice if it wasn't for the fishy aroma which doesn't smell appealing for me. In any case, it's a big improvement on the first one.
This one is already great bang for your buck.

The jinxuan has to be the pinnacle of the 3 samples I received. The aroma is good and so is the taste, it's very classical: nothing special but not bad either. For the price - if I'm correct- a merely 10 euros/200g, it is great! It would be an ideal tea for every day drinking for someone who doesn't want to spend a lot of money.

The quality of the leaves seems to be excellent. It almost solely consists of young buds with 1 or 2 young leafs. They are all quite small and some of them have some red spots because of irregular oxidation. I also noticed they contain less chlorophyl than most Taiwanese grown teas.

I'm to have received the oppertunity to compare these Thai oolongs against their Taiwanese counterparts. It has given better insights in the cultivars as well as in the production proces.
All of them lack a bit in the finesse and elegance the Taiwanese oolong tea provides but what do you expect for such a price?

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