This tea reaffirmed my liking of darker oolongs. I’ll let the company’s words start out this description:
“Completely different from typical dark oolongs, floral and spicy aromas emanate from the amber coloured liquor and prepare your palate for a complex flavour that starts with wood and caramel. The taste of dried apricot lingers with a pleasant mouthfeel that’s both sweet and floral, making it hard to have only one cup.”
I pretty much got what they described in more detail via Western. This tea is surprisingly heady for a darker tea, with a rich floral and sweet smell like roasted dates. The first sip was more complex after two minutes and was equally aromatic and syrupy: gardenia, maple, cherry, caramel, then wood in the finish. Second, more gardenia, apricot, cinnamon, wood, honey. Third, continuing gardenia, caramel, and a bit of a date or a fig note. Fourth, faint maple wood, clove, honey, and hyacinth. The same went on in the later steeps becoming a little fruitier each time, more towards something like a cherry.
In short, a heady and syrupy tea that lived up to the unique description the company gave it. I’ve only had a few dark oolongs that were as good or complex, and the only other similar tea in my stash right now is the Eco-Cha Honey Fragrance Oolong, which is roasted. This one, however, is not and I think that is to this tea’s benefit. It is “dark”, but it still had an oolong’s profile overall with a decent mix of green and red in the leaves. I’m not sure who to recommend this one to. It is sweet enough for a newer drinker, but it might be too sweet for some. I’d consider grabbing another sample, but nothing exceeding 50 grams for me personally.