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Menghaitian Oolong Black

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Qingxin Oolong cultivar, Yunnan Black tea processing

Taiwan meets Yunnan in a cup

Sweet, mellow, and incredibly fragrant


 

Menghaitian is located 20km North of Pu'er City, it is the most boring place in Yunnan with nothing to see apart from a power plant... until you look at what lies below the weeds. What looks like a marsh can sometimes hide an oolong tea plantation, this is what we learned in Menghaitian.

 

If each tea must have a story, this video tells the beginning of it:
 

 

We found this abandoned plantation through a tip given by Li Chao Yuan, the maker of the Yingpan Shan Black. Last Spring he managed to get fresh leaves from this plantation. What the video doesn't tell is that a few of those gardens were acquired by the locals and they produce a tiny amount each year. Mr Li processed the tea in his factory of Yingpan Shan, using a traditional Yunnan black tea processing method.

The result is outstanding, it is rare to find Qingxin oolong tea processed in this style. If you brew it in a mug, the fragrance will easily fill a small room, just like oriental beauty. Yet, it has more thickness and a heavier oxidation than a typical oriental beauty, despite the leaves looking purple and green.

You'll notice there are no buds on the leaves. This is because the farmers let the flushes grow fully and harvest the top three leaves.

If you brew gongfu style, you'll be able to extract many brews from this tea. Unlike most other Yunnan black teas, this one was rolled softly, feel free to push the brewing times, even in the early infusions. You can end the session with a long brew as this tea will never get bitter.