Perhaps one of the better-known oolongs is Four Seasons. Why is it called that? The source for this tea’s name comes from the fact that the cultivar used for this tea has a high yield in each season. This particular sample is from the Spring 2018 season, selected, as Fong Mong Tea‘s website states:
This Four Seasons Spring oolong was strictly selected as a higher grade oolong tea, a nice fruit-like flavor to this tea, with floral notes and hints of a grassy like flavor, possesses particularly pure and strong fresh flower fragrance plus smooth taste which you, tea lovers, won’t miss it out.
So on to the tasting! As usual, I brewed this with a gaiwan with shorter steeps the first tasting, then brewed it in a teapot with a longer steep for the second. The dry leaf is fragrant and to me it smells quite fresh and vegetal, with the fruit and floral aromas being more subtle here. That changed with brewing.
I used approximately 2g of leaf for the gaiwan, giving them a rinse before steeping. Using shorter steeps, I opted to begin with a 15 second infusion time for the first, then added 5 seconds with each following infusion for a pattern of 15, 20, 25, etc. I used 30ml of water to begin, adding to that amount in 15ml increments as the leaves opened up. The water I used was hot, but not boiling, approximately 85 degrees Celsius. The liquor first appeared a very pale sunny golden yellow and gained a little more colour as infusions progressed. The aroma was sweet and grassy, quintessentially green oolong.
I found the mouthfeel of this tea was quite smooth, a little bit squeaky, and had just a hint of astringency I found more at the back of my throat with the lingering green aftertaste. There is definitely fruity and floral flavours here, more so fruity. There’s sweetness but also an interesting tartness, sometimes reminding me of cherries, sometimes goji berries, even sometimes citrus – a little bit hard to put a definitive finger on, because the flavours are complex and shifting slightly from infusion to infusion. I’m loving this! With that fruitiness is floral notes with butter and legumes, a verdant grassy note. This tea definitely tastes spring-like. I carried on for 9 infusions this way, before wrapping up with a final long steep that brought out that familiar foggy mountain air note.
On to the teapot – one long infusion of 6 minutes produced a rich creamy cup with potent fruity and floral notes that was also heavily green and grassy. The second infusion is quite a bit mellowed and the fruity notes begin to fade here. While the tea was excellent this way, I think I prefer it in the gaiwan with shorter steeping times.
(Sample provided for review. All opinions expressed are my own.)
Other Fong Mong Tea Reviews:
Tea Review: Tsui Yu Jade Oolong from Fong Mong Tea
Tea Review: Jin Xuan by Fong Mong Tea
Tea Review: Zhu Lu Alishan High Mountain Oolong from Fong Mong Tea
Tea Review: Jasmine Scented Oolong from Fong Mong Tea
Tea Review: Wenshan Baozhong Taiwan Pou Chong Oolong from Fong Mong Tea