From the most mysterious reaches of the orient comes a tea quite unlike any other, one so good its name starts with the noise an impressed person makes. Living somewhere between a rich black tea and a refreshing green tea, Oolong is a complex and multi-faceted beverage that, though among the trickiest leaves to create, is certainly one of the easiest to enjoy. Known for its dark, distinctively twisted leaves—which give birth to its fittingly mysterious Chinese Wu Long name, “The Black Dragon”—Oolong is a tea that contains more tiers of flavour than a Pagoda, and evolves from floral and sweet, to smoky and peaty as you brew it. Not as widely drunk here in the west as it is in Asia, where its layered flavours have been highly regarded for hundreds of years, we think Oolong is a tea that’s Oolong overdue a raised profile around the world.
Oolong tea benefits
- A teatastic way to help you achieve your daily recommended fluid intake
- Contains flavonoids, compounds which can help keep your heart and lungs healthy and happy1
- Also contains L-theanine, which when combined with caffeine can keep you alert and in the zone.
Tea time ideas
No prizes for guessing that, as such a distinctively Chinese tea, Oolong’s unique flavour profile pairs up masterfully with foods of an Asian persuasion. We heartily recommend getting some friends round for a beautiful banquet of oriental goodies and matching each and every bite up with a lovely sip of Oolong. Think snackable dim sum dumplings, pretty parcels of Peking duck, and bowls of beautifully fluffy white rice. Trust us, Oolong’s complicated interplay of rich black tea notes and refreshing green tea intermingles perfectly with the salty, spicy, sweet and sour flavours often associated with oriental cuisine.
Getting the best from your brew
Oolong is a delicate tea that requires a little more care when brewing, but don’t let that put you off trying this deliciously multi-faceted leaf. As a rule of thumb, it’s better to air on the side of caution when brewing, but you’ll know it’s ready when the water turns a light yellowish green colour. Oolong tea benefits from 1.5 – 2 minutes steeping in boiled water that’s cooled a little. This should allow the tea’s clean, strong, complex flavours and mellow aftertaste to blossom without being startled away.
1EFSA recommends 2L and 2.5L fluid intake per day for women and men, respectively
based on a daily consumption of at least 500 mg of flavonoids per day, 3 cups of Tea per day, as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle