Oolong with low brew temp

Owes its flavors to oxidation levels between green & black tea.

Jan 22nd 14 6:52 pm
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Oolong with low brew temp

by Noonie » Jan 22nd 14 6:52 pm

As I fall deeper down the rabbit hole (you know, the one lined with tea leaves, yixings and gaiwans) I'm drinking coffee less and less. I use to have espresso in the mornings, now I'm having one or two cups of sencha. For a few years I've been having tea mid-morning or after dinner. Now I'm finding my afternoon coffee isn't appealing any longer, but I would still like a warm beverage with some caffeine to keep my going (at work).

Our work is a bit finicky with electric appliances so I'm not sure a kettle will work for me (microwaves are downstairs in the cafateria), but we do have a water dispenser on a bunn coffee machine (I use it for mid-morning sencha and it works well). I'm wondering what oolong, or other tea that is different than sencha (for variety) works well with cooler water...I'm guessing this machine avgs 80c, but if I catch it just after a brew cycle it may be higher? I've thought of dragon well (I brew at home - 85c for 4 min), but haven't had other non-sencha that I brew much below 90c.

Thanks.

Jan 22nd 14 7:24 pm
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Re: Oolong with low brew temp

by saxon75 » Jan 22nd 14 7:24 pm

I use the hot water dispenser at my office every day, and the temperature out of it varies wildly between about 70C and 85C. I've generally found that Chinese/Taiwanese greens and oolongs work OK, while black tea and pu-erh ends up too bland, and Japanese green tea generally ends up too bitter. But other than Japanese teas, I tend not to be particularly fussy about my steeping parameters.

My go-to teas for the office these days are Dragonwell and charcoal-roasted Dong-Ding. I've also done some heavy roasted TGY and yancha with decent results.

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Jan 25th 14 7:23 am
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Re: Oolong with low brew temp

by Mureke » Jan 25th 14 7:23 am

Oriental beauty is best brewed at exactly those temperatures. Give it a try.

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Jan 25th 14 5:20 pm
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Re: Oolong with low brew temp

by wyardley » Jan 25th 14 5:20 pm

Mureke wrote:Oriental beauty is best brewed at exactly those temperatures. Give it a try.
I usually use boiling or just off the boil for Oriental Beauty, since it's so heavily oxidized.

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Jan 25th 14 5:49 pm
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Re: Oolong with low brew temp

by debunix » Jan 25th 14 5:49 pm

My favorite teas for cool brewing are minimally oxidized Taiwanese high mountain oolongs, which are delicious when tossed dry into a water bottle, covered with cool water, and left for a few hours. I'd trust them at any brewing temperature, and while I prefer to start them at 195, for me, their flavor profile works better when unable to start with optimum temps than many higher roast/higher oxidized teas.

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Jan 25th 14 6:54 pm
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Re: Oolong with low brew temp

by wyardley » Jan 25th 14 6:54 pm

I would just use lower quality teas and less leaf. Cooler water will flatter these teas more, or at least give you a fairly inoffensive brew.

If you want to do more serious tea drinking at work, see if you can get away with keeping a kettle or water boiler on your desk.

Jan 25th 14 10:16 pm
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Re: Oolong with low brew temp

by Noonie » Jan 25th 14 10:16 pm

debunix wrote:My favorite teas for cool brewing are minimally oxidized Taiwanese high mountain oolongs, which are delicious when tossed dry into a water bottle, covered with cool water, and left for a few hours. I'd trust them at any brewing temperature, and while I prefer to start them at 195, for me, their flavor profile works better when unable to start with optimum temps than many higher roast/higher oxidized teas.
At home I've been brewing Da Yu Ling from DTH at 88c...this one is certainly affordable compared to some high mountain I've read about, so I'll just bring this to work, give it a try, and if I like it I'll buy more.

Thanks everyone for the tips...