I tasted three of the teas, and was quite pleased.
DRY LEAF: The hard, dry leaves were individually rolled irregularly into small green “pearls,” and are uniformly dark green in color. The unsteeped aroma is predictably, but not overwhelmingly vegetal.
INFUSED LIQUOR AROMA: Roasty and rich, similar in several ways to a Yunnan black tea.
INFUSED LIQUOR TASTE: Rich, aggressive roasted flavor. While roasted Yunnan teas will have a fair amount of tips to reduce the power of the liquor, Imperial Pearl is closer to a black tea in many ways. Clear, medium brown color. A morning tea guaranteed to coax you awake, with a certain amount of sweetness to allay the smokiness.
REMARKS: "Brandy oolong" is oxidized at around 90%, and the leaves are picked in summer. As a result, the flavor is deeper and more pronounced. This particular tea received recognition at the North American Tea Championship. You can easily reduce the intensity of the liquor by cutting down on the overall quantity of leaves before brewing.
RATING: 74/100, 4/5
DRY LEAF: Each leaf is rolled into a roughly 1/4 inch pellet. Medium green, with occasional brown stems; fresh, green oolong aroma.
INFUSED LIQUOR AROMA: Refreshing spinach aroma
INFUSED LIQUOR TASTE: Fresh taste of cooked asparagus, healthful and satisfying. Clear, light/medium green liquor.
REMARKS: Each pellet of Jade Oolong opens into a tip and two leaves - full of flavor. Surprisingly smooth body - and, relatively speaking, a bargain.
RATING: 80/100, 4/5
ORIENTAL BEAUTY CAKE
DRY LEAF: Dark green with what looks like whitish buds. Peachy aroma, maybe a touch of taffy-like sweetness.
INFUSED LIQUOR AROMA: Honey brown with an ever-so-slight astringency.
INFUSED LIQUOR TASTE: Slightly restrained flavor - no astringency here - mixing honey and lychee and an afterthought of lemon; and as is the case with most Oriental Beauty, the taste is smooth and appealing.
REMARKS: Most Oriental Beauty tea is notable for the infamous insect-bitten leaves; this version has been pressed into a tea cake, an inventive way to make its appearance unique and appealing.
RATING: 79/100, 4/5
Last edited by spinmail
on Aug 3rd, '12, 14:59, edited 4 times in total.