Today I am reviewing a Spring 2020 Yu Qilan Wuyi oolong tea from the Li Family and sold by Verdant Tea.
This particular tea was sent to be as a 5 gram sample.
For those not aware, the Qilin is a mythological Asian creature that was said to appear during either the arrival or passing of sages or rulers. The earliest reference we have to the Qilin is from the Zuo zhuan, a Chinese narrative historical book from the 5th century.
Brand: Verdant Tea
Tea: 2020 Yu Qilin Wuyi Oolong from the Li Family
Harvest: Spring, 2020
Location: Wuyishan Ecological Preserve, Wuyishan, Fujian, China
Elevation: 600 Meters
Tea Varietal: Yu Qilin
For this review, I brewed 5 grams of this tea in a gaiwan using spring water.
I soaked the tea for 10 seconds in hot water and discarded the wash.
Brewed for 20 seconds.
This has a typical roasted oolong flavor with notes of dark spice, vanilla and fruit.
Minimal bitterness or astringency.
It’s enjoyable, but so far it’s not my favorite oolong tea. For example, I much preferred the Li Family’s Bai Rui Xiang Wuyi Oolong Tea.
Despite having a decent flavor, this Qilin tea seems a little weak in flavor, but let’s go into the second steep, because maybe it will show more character.
Brewed for 30 seconds.
This steep is a little richer and has a nice body to it.
Notes of anise, candied dates, rose, and vanilla, with a typical roasted oolong personality.
Brewed for 50 seconds.
Similar flavor, but I do notice a bit of a cooling sensation on the tongue.
The flavor seems to linger a bit longer then on the previous steps as well.
Brewed for 1 minute.
The flavor has become more spice forward, with a prominent minerality.
It still has a very rich mouth-feel, which is one of the things I like most about this tea.
It’s definitely a good quality tea, and it has a nice flavor, but I wouldn’t consider it one of my favorites simply because there are a lot of teas out there that taste like this.