Chinese and Taiwanese oolong (wulong) also known as semi-oxidized tea has a wide range of flavours and leaf shapes. It may easily be seen as by far the most naturally aromatic type of tea in existence. The technological nuances of its production evolved very differently in different regions, often secluded and divided by natural barriers. Oolong tea production began in the Ming Dynasty in the Wu Yi Mountains in the north-west of Fujian province. Wuyishan technology subsisted around Chaozhou city (Guangdong Province) and in southern Fujian, in Anxi county. Wu Yy mountain tea was known as “oolong” 烏龍, or literally "Black Dragon" due to the darkened colour of the leaves after extended heating and fermentation. According to modern tea classification Wuyi tea varieties are heavily fermented oolongs. This darker oolong category also includes most Guangdong and Chaozhou tea (processed using a similar technology).
The more modern Southern Fujian oolong tea is usually greener and sphere or ball-shaped. When brewed the ball-shaped leaves open into tea tips of 2-3 upper leaves. Such tea is considered lightly fermented oolong tea or “qing cha”, 清茶 , turquoise tea. During the fermentation process only the edges of the leaves are oxidized. This allows qing cha to keep many nutrients and a refreshing floral and fruity aromatic bouquet.
Oolongs have been produced in Taiwan since the XVIII century. The tea cultivars and production technology were sourced in southern Fujian. Today famous Taiwanese varieties such as Ali Shan, Si Ji Chun, Dong Ding and others are produced using "light roasting" Qing Xiang, 清 鲜. Overall leaf fermentation do not exceed 45%.
High quality oolongs are harvested at high altitudes. Tea shrubs grow among misty damp rocks and small terraced gardens and plantations. The quality of an oolong depends on the altidude, the quality of the raw material and the technology master’s professionalism and experience, as well as the mountain slope orientation, the number of sunny and foggy days during maturation and many other details.
Any kind of oolong is characterized by rich, vibrant and diverse flavor, thick and luxuriant natural aroma, constantly changing and elusive fragrance nuances, longstanding steeping (7 – 20 times). Oolong tea brewing is known as “Gong Fu Cha”, 功夫 茶, “tea mastery" which requires extra time and attention, practical tea experience, special tea ware and a special tea mood and setting. The ability of oolong teas to boast a luscious aroma after numerour repeated infusions makes an oolong tea session a genuine tea ceremony!
BUY OOLONG TEA
You can buy high quality oolong tea in our shop! All tea varieties in our collection are made by hand at small farms located in nature reserves of national and world- renown. We also offer special tea ware and all the necessary accessories for tea ceremonies as well as education services in the ancient asian Art of Tea.