Tea Forté's oolong teas offer the perfect balance between the fresh grassy flavor of green tea and the subtle complexity of black tea. The production of oolong tea is a labor-intensive process carried out by true artisanal tea makers whose skill determines the aroma, taste and color. Known for its refreshing fragrance, Tea Forté Oolong Tea is considered by many to be a connoisseur's tea, offering a symphony of notes and nuances.
What is oolong tea?
The production of tea from planting to packaging is a complex and beautiful process. It involves some combination of harvesting, oxidizing, rolling, steaming/frying, drying, and in some cases, special steps to blend in the natural fragrances and flavors of herbs and flowers. Oolong tea, in particular, is semi-fermented, and its oxidation process is longer than that of all other tea varieties except black tea.
Depending on the leaves used to make it, oolong tea can take on a wide range of flavor profiles, from soft, lush, and floral to woody, dark, and intense. Its appearance before steeping is either that of long, curled leaves or loosely rolled beads with tails.
Where is oolong tea from?
The word oolong is Chinese for “black dragon tea,” and oolong is also referred to in China as “qingcha,” which means “dark green tea.” On the oxidation scale, oolong falls between green and black teas, hence the multiple meanings behind its names.
Oolong tea production likely began during the Tang Dynasty, which ran from the seventh through tenth centuries in China. Multiple theories exist about oolong’s exact origin story, but all agree that it comes from the Fujian province of China. The Fujian regions of Anxi County and the Wuyi Mountains both serve as major oolong production centers today. It’s also produced in Taiwan and the Guangdong province, although many of those teas are consumed locally rather than exported.
How to prepare oolong tea
To bring out the nuance in a cup of oolong tea, begin by heating a cup (8 ounces) of water to 195 degrees Fahrenheit. Pour the hot water over your Tea Forté pyramid infuser (or one Tbsp of loose leaf tea in a reusable infuser) and let steep for five minutes or longer. This beautiful tea variety is best enjoyed without accompaniment, although you may wish to sweeten to taste.