OolongName: Imperial Formosa Oolong

Brand: Golden Moon

Type: Oolong

Form: Loose leaf

Review: Fall is here and so I am breaking out the darker oolongs. Imperial Formosa Oolong by Golden Moon boasts a beautiful dry leaf of various colors: Red, light brown, dark brown, and a bit of silvery tip. The nose is gorgeous too, at once sweet, nutty and spicy. The tea infuses to one of the most beautiful liquors I have ever seen: Clear honey-gold tinged with red. Lovely.

The infused nose remains sweet and somewhat fruity. On the palate, the tea is medium bodied and its flavors are as complex as the colors of the dry leaf: I taste a blend of candied chestnuts and a hint of fruit, with maybe a tiny bit of citrus. The finish is slightly floral with some mineral notes. Unlike some lesser-grade Formosa oolongs, Golden Moon’s version is extremely smooth, with no harshness or bitterness. Because the tea does not easily get bitter, try experimenting with steep times. A longer steep brings out the tea’s depth while shorter steeps produce a light, crisp, refreshing tea.

Imperial Formosa Oolong is great for multiple steeps and lasts a long, long time. I’m sipping my 4th infusion and the tea shows no sign of breaking down or fading away. This makes it very cost-effective and a great option for folks who like to sit down with one cup of tea each day that just needs “refreshing” with hot water.

Preparation Tips: This is a hardy tea that can stand high temperatures, though I’d recommend bringing the water temperature down just a bit after boiling: 200F-208F works pretty well.

Serving Tips: This makes an excellent and refined iced tea. Consider serving it with a formal meal, such as Thanksgiving dinner: It is great with food, and its lovely color will sparkle in a wine glass or champagne flute!

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