85

Ovetime, I’ve become skeptical when tea companies list oolongs as buttery; when I see “buttery” I expect a flavour and texture explosion evoking all the oily, salty-sweet richness of life. Butiki’s ambiguously named “Organic Sparrow Tongue” Oolong always delivered. Some batches of Shan Li Xi deliver (with jam like a delicious, fully loaded scone). This Tie Guan Yin delivers too and its glorious.

I’m internally squeeing right now. I want to yell and to curse all the other Tie Guan Yin oolongs I’ve had, which will now and forever be deemed insufficient. It’s like, after years of being indifferent to Chardonnays, stumbling upon a “butter bomb” Californian Chardonnay and realizing life could be beautiful (I’m sorry Chardonnay purists, I know this preference is wine sacrilege of the highest order). This is a Lilac butter bomb and it’s even better.

Anyways, I’m so grateful for this free sample. I would’ve never ordered this on my own because I thought I was done with Tie Guan Yin varieties. You did right, Mandala!

Now I’m off to play with the rest and see how it holds up to multiple steeps and sessions.

Steep Count: 3 + Rinse. Subsequent steeps taste of lilac cream.

(2017 harvest)

Flavors: Butter, Creamy, Floral, Gardenias, Salt, Sweet, Vegetal

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec
Garret

I really loved reading this review. Thank you so much for taking the time to type this up. So glad I sent this sample to you. I think it’s a great one. Grateful, Garret

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Garret

I really loved reading this review. Thank you so much for taking the time to type this up. So glad I sent this sample to you. I think it’s a great one. Grateful, Garret

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Bio

I started my Steepster loose leaf adventure back in 2012. I can’t say I’m completely new anymore, but I still view oolong as a magical, extraterrestrial creature that unfurls in water.

Ingredients/flavours I tend to dislike or stay away from: apple, cocoa nibs, marine, peach, stevia, dairy products

Subjective Rating System 2.0:

90-100: My absolute favourite tea. Will impulsively buy and hoard like a dragon.

85-89: A favourite tea. May have quality flaws that I choose to ignore.

76-84: A lovely tea, maybe of high quality or masterful blending, but not one I’m likely to order again.

70-75: Enjoyable, but I may have few minor problems with quality, consistency, ingredient chemistry and/or personal preferences.

50-69: Quality, consistency, blending, or personal preference problems are apparent, but I wouldn’t pass up a cup.

11-49: Varying levels of undrinkable tea. I don’t give a lot of these ratings out, since I tend to grab teas I know will appeal to me.

1-10: Nightmare tea from the chaos realms. This is last year’s low-grade bancha mixed with rancid coconut, stale cocoa nibs, over-enthusiastic hibiscus, and stevia sweetener. I’m pretty sure it doesn’t exist.

Location

BC, Lower Mainland

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