Oolong tea is one of the most traditional types of teas in China and Taiwan. It is made from the leaves, buds and stems of the Camellia sinensis plant and is slightly fermented and semi-oxidized, placing its flavour somewhere in the middle between green tea and black tea. Although there is a wide variety of oolong teas, the most famous oolong comes from the Fuijan province of China.
How is oolong tea produced?
After picked, the tea leaves are being withered and tossed and bruised to improve oxidation and then left to oxidize to perfection, somewhere in the middle between green tea and black tea. After that, tea farmers stop the natural fermentation process by steaming or hot pressing the leaves in a hot pan, preparing them for the rolling step that makes oolong have this round shape and intensifies the flavour. After rolled, the tea leaves are left to dry in the sun, in hot pans or in hot air. Lastly, the tea is fired using different methods that allow for a smoky or fruity taste.
Why choose oolong?
Oolong is a great tasting tea but knowing that it comes with health benefits, that is making our choice to drink oolong tea even better. Just as green tea, oolong is also packed with anti-oxidants and when consumed on a regular basis it helps with fighting free radials in the human body. Other benefits that come with drinking oolong regularly are that it can help burn fat faster and improve metabolism, improve mental performance due to the caffeine level it contains, improve digestion and even strengthen immune system.
How to brew oolong?
If you're familiar with the tea steeping process and timing, you probably know that teas need to be steeped at a different temperature and for different timing (You can find out more here). For oolong, it is recommended to heat up water to around 205 degrees and keep your loose tea or tea sachet in the water for about 4-5 minutes and not more. Keeping your oolong tea for longer, would change the flavour, so stay with up to 5 minutes to ensure a pleasant flavour.
Harney & Sons Pomegranate Oolong Tea
The oolong tea used in Harney & Sons Pomegranate Oolong is Ti Quan Yin oolong [Thih-koan-im], literally meaning "Goddess of Mercy". Legend tells of the goddess leading a devout farmer to a tiny yet intriguingly aromatic tea plant that he nurtured and shared among neighbors, with prosperity soon following. This oolong is a premium variety of Chinese Oolong Tea and it also comes from the Fujian Province. It has medium body with a very light clear green-yellow liquor. It is caffeinated with floral and citrus aroma from the pomegranate.