(2009 fut en français et très proche).
The mountains of Shan Lin Shi have wonderful landscapes with waterfalls, bamboo and pine trees. This combination is what makes Shan Lin Shi so particular in Taiwan.
The high altitude brings a comfortable freshness even in late spring, when the spring leaves are harvested. This ensures that the leaves keep their fresh fragrances. The high elevation means that the leaves grow slower, but bigger. They take their time to absorb all the strength from their soil and surroundings. These are the main two reasons why High Mountain Oolong taste so good.
Still, the quality can still vary greatly from batch to batch and from one season to another. (See last year's post). This year was not different, but I am glad to report that this spring's Shan Lin Shi Oolong is close in taste to last year's (and even better!)
Cultivar: Luanze Oolong
Origin: Shan Lin Shi
Elevation: 1500-1600 meters
Hand harvested on April 26, 2010
The dry leaves smell fresh with light flower, vegetable and vetiver fragrances. The dark green color shows how concentrated these leaves are.
Don't they look like fragments of jade!
The oxidation is lighter than for this year's Ali Shan Oolong. The fragrances are lighter, more flowery and a little senchaesque. The papaya fragrance I felt last year is 'greener'. What doesn't change is the the purity and sweetness of the taste. Incredible. This tea amazes me. And it has such a 'finesse'. It seems so light, but so fresh and rich in chaqi and aftertaste at the same time. A sweetness in my throat lingers softly. Hummm.
Below, the open leaves show that they have been bitten by tea jassids! These insects know what's good! You can also see how perfectly clear and transparent the brew is.
First, I had planned to use this fabric for a tea from Zhu Shan (Bamboo Mountain). But I find it's also a good fit for Shan Lin Shi. It has freshness and power. The water fills David Louveau's woodfired bowl and the tea reminds me of the waterfalls. With this Cha Xi, I'm again hiking in Shan Lin Shi.
And my delicate orchids are getting ready to open up more buds... It's a wonderful life!
Japanese Oolong tea
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