Oolong teas are largely produced in areas throughout China and Taiwan. There’s all kinds in kinds of oolongs; any teas which can be semi-oxidized are thought-about oolongs. Some have extra inexperienced tea traits, whereas others have black tea traits relying on oxidation ranges.
As a result of oolongs have a protracted and wealthy historical past on the planet of tea, our directions for easy methods to brew oolong teas deal with the long-standing custom of Asian brewing practices. For oolong sachets, we suggest a normal 3-minute steeping at 190℉. For free leaf, nonetheless, we encourage you to take a extra ceremonial strategy by participating in a practice referred to as small pot brewing.
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An Introduction to Small Pot Brewing
Oolongs are significantly identified for his or her curled, twisted or rolled leaves. As an alternative of 1, 3-5 minute steeping that we suggest for a lot of free leaf teas, oolongs are sometimes loved over a number of quick steeps for a number of extractions, a follow often known as small pot brewing or Gong Fu fashion. This follow is complementary to the rolled leaves of many oolongs as a result of it permits you to watch how the leaves change throughout subsequent extractions, requiring endurance, curiosity and energetic engagement.
Steeped in Custom
Following the ceremonial custom of small pot brewing permits one to find the subtleties in flavors throughout several types of oolongs, exploring the meditative and euphoric qualities of the tea. Small pot brewing is characteristically carried out in a gaiwan or small teapot of roughly 100-150 mL. There isn’t any precise variety of steeps that one ought to adhere to, however usually 4-5 steeps at about 10-20 seconds, including 5-10 seconds on every consecutive steep. It is dependent upon particular person taste desire, high quality of the oolong and form of the leaf. Tightly rolled leaves will stand as much as a number of extractions, whereas leaves which can be merely twisted will permit for fewer extractions.
Measuring Tea Leaves for Small Pot Brewing
Earlier than starting this tea service, put together by gathering your tea leaves, a teapot, small tea cups and a tea strainer and small decanter, also referred to as a good cup. Some teapots have an extra strainer in-built to the spout to make sure that no giant particles will filter into your cup. After getting these elements, measure out the tea leaves in response to the rules beneath. As a normal rule of thumb for brewing oolongs, fill 1/3 of the teapot with tea leaves.
For a 100 ml, we measure:
- Ali Shan Oolong – 1 teaspoon*
- Bai Hao Oolong – 2.5 teaspoons*
- Ti Kwan Yin Oolong – 1 heaping teaspoon*
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*Word: Slightly than utilizing an actual teaspoon measurement, we used a small commonplace kitchen spoon.
Methods to Brew Unfastened Leaf Oolong Teas Gong Fu Type
- Convey spring or freshly drawn filtered water to 190℉. And not using a thermometer, this may be achieved by letting boiling water cool for about 2 minutes.
- Place the oolong leaves straight into your teapot. Seek advice from our information above to measure your tea leaves.
- Fill the pot with sizzling water, permitting the leaves to take a seat for not more than 5 seconds, then discard the water. We discuss with this primary steeping because the rinse. This can assist to initially unfurl the leaves, which facilitates additional extraction in later steeps.
- As soon as once more, fill the pot with 190℉ water, pouring straight over the leaves. Wait roughly 10-20 seconds, then pour the tea via a strainer into the glass pot. Subsequent, pour tea into the tea cups from the glass pot. This can be certain that every particular person is experiencing the identical taste in every pour.
- Proceed steeps as many instances as you want, including 5-10 seconds to every. As time passes, look to see the evolution of the leaf and the deepening of the liquor coloration. Most significantly take note of the altering taste with every steep. As soon as the power of the tea not comes via, the leaves have been absolutely extracted.
After every subsequent extraction, it is possible for you to to notice the totally different taste profiles between steeps, and the way the flavour develops over time. For extra tightly rolled oolongs, the primary extractions will likely be mushy and lightweight. For oolongs with open leaves that don’t require a wake-up steeping, it is possible for you to to expertise a richer taste in your first sip. From there, the flavour is subjective. Some oolongs might give off a gradual expertise, and a few might have nice selection between steeps.
Issues to Watch
Small pot brewing is essentially the most participating, in-depth strategy to perceive oolongs. Whereas the oolong steeps, discover how the form of the leaves adjustments and expands; observe how the liquor coloration develops from gentle to darkish, then again to gentle towards the tip of your steeping session; distinguish how the flavour evolves from mushy to wealthy, and what occurs within the last steeps.
There isn’t any particular indicator that can signify when the oolong has completed steeping. As a normal rule, the leaves have been absolutely extracted when the power of the tea not comes via. That is totally different for every particular person, and this conventional brewing follow encourages you to be inquisitive all through every step of the method.
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