Four Seasons Red Oolong
The Four Seasons Red Oolong is a highly oxidised tea from Zushan Township (Bamboo Mountain) in Nantou County, Taiwan. The tea is made from the Four Seasons cultivar, hence its name. This particular batch was harvested in August 2017. The taste of the tea is described as “clean and satisfying. There are lovely notes that are mineral, sweet, tangy and lightly floral.” (link)
The area highlighted in red shows the location of Zushan Township in Taiwan.
The main element that is special about this tea is the fact that it is a “red” oolong, which implies that it is highly oxidised. The oxidation of this tea is around 90% and this is similar to some black teas. On their blog, they say they classified this tea as an oolong tea and not as a black tea due to the cultivar that is used and due to the production process. This process is similar to most oolong teas. The “red” in the name refers to the close resemblance to black (= red) tea.
The dry leaves are typical of a ball-rolled oolong. The colour is a very dark green (or even black).
The wet leaves have a dark colour and are completely unfurled.
- Water 90°C
- 5g of leaves for a 100ml Chaozhou teapot
- 1 rinse
- 6 (+2) steeps
The dry leaves have a pleasant smell. It’s mainly fresh red berries and very light notes of warm honey.
The smell of the wet leaves is similar but the main difference is that they now smell of a darker and slightly less fresh kind of red berries.
1st steep: a clear and fresh taste from the start. I’m getting red fruits and freshly picked red berries. Bright flavours that remind me of an early spring morning.
2nd steep: WOW! I’m already blown away by the smell, which mainly consists of raspberries. This steep is all about raspberries that carry on for a long time. It takes you from early spring in the first steep to an early summer’s day in this steep. Amazing fruity aftertaste.
3rd steep: the leaves have opened up completely and the taste is good. Raspberries again from the start but not as intense as during steep 2. The aftertaste is the same. I’m getting very sweet raspberries that make you long for a raspberry sorbet because those are the flavours you are getting while drinking this tea.
4th steep: it’s not sweet, fresh raspberries anymore that I’m getting but more ripe red berries and raspberries. Aftertaste is very fruity and sweet.
5th steep: light notes of red berries and raspberries at the start. These notes are prominent in the middle and change into a light floral aftertaste. Still pleasant to drink.
6th steep: pleasant and prominent raspberries. The aftertaste mainly consists of fresh raspberries. Amazing steep to end with.
I did two additional steeps but did not take detailed notes. It’s more of the amazing raspberries but a bit lighter each steep.
I really enjoyed drinking this amazing tea. I did not know what to expect but was pleasantly surprised by its delicate qualities. Definitely flavours I haven’t experienced before so I’m happy I got to taste them while drinking this tea. If you are looking for a fruity tea that can do multiple infusions, this is your go-to tea! I highly recommend this one. My final score is 9/10 because of all the reasons mentioned above. Can you tell I’m a big fan?