Malepa "Harvest" Jade Oolong Tea - Spring 2017

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Almond, Cranberry, Dried Fruit, Floral, Grain, Herbaceous, Nutty, Spinach, Tangy
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Leafhopper
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 g 4 oz / 120 ml

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  • “This is my second session with this tea. I was going to write about it before, but was overwhelmed by its complexity. This high mountain oolong from the Li Shan area performs well above its...” Read full tasting note
    95

From Taiwan Sourcing

This is probably the very first time anyone has ever heard of the name “Malepa”. Normally this location will just be categorized as “Lishan” in high mountain jade oolong, and the this historical name would be forgotten under the fame of Lishan. Until now.

Malepa is the name of an indigenous clan which belongs to Taiya tribe. This written history of this clan “Malepa” could be dated back to mid 19th century. It means “living at high place.” Throughout the path of history, they have changed their location for at least five time. There final location settled at where it is now around 40 years ago, and the name “Malepa” was saved and used even til today. This tea came from where the tribe is settled, and we regret we did not obtain it in year 2016.

Despite the overall awkward weather this spring, Malepa managed to stand out from lots of teas that were from higher elevation, and delivers an strong and powerful character, making this tea feel like an indigenous great “harvest” that was accomplished with Taiya people in the woods.

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1 Tasting Note

95
217 tasting notes

This is my second session with this tea. I was going to write about it before, but was overwhelmed by its complexity. This high mountain oolong from the Li Shan area performs well above its relatively modest price point. I steeped 5 g in a 120 ml porcelain teapot at 205F for 25, 20, 25, 30, 30, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds.

The first steep is a wonderful balance of floral, fruity, and vegetal. It has notes of peonies, sweet pea flowers, dried fruit (cranberries?), cooked spinach, arugula, and herbs, and is much pleasanter than that sounds. In the second and third steeps, nutty overtones become more noticeable and the liquor gets stronger and tangier. It also has the silky mouthfeel I associate with good Li Shan teas. I’m having trouble describing exactly what’s going on because this oolong is so complicated.

The next few steeps are nuttier and fruitier as the florals fade into the background. There’s a hint of grain, as mentioned on the website. If I were being fancy, I’d describe this as a cranberry-almond biscotti next to a receding bouquet of peonies. Even after nine steeps, this tea isn’t a sad vegetal mess like some high mountain oolongs, retaining its tangy, dried fruit flavour.

This is an exceptional oolong that I’m surprised is still in stock.

Flavors: Almond, Cranberry, Dried Fruit, Floral, Grain, Herbaceous, Nutty, Spinach, Tangy

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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