Review: Earl Grey Windermere Oolong
Chi of Tea’s Earl Grey Windermere Oolong has a smooth, full-bodied taste with a pleasant taste of rich, malty chocolate. While an enjoyable tea, I’m beginning to doubt that I received a properly labeled sample from them as it doesn’t really seem to detect the tastes of bergamot or cream; instead, it came across to me as a malty chocolate on a black tea base.
The tea description from the Chi of Tea website:
An superb blend of Darjeeling oolong tea and Darjeeling silver needle tea with a creamy blend of vanilla cream & bergamot bliss.
Appearance: Large hand twisted and rolled black and tan Darjeeling oolong tea leaves. Silver needles.
Aroma While Brewing: Bright and rich bergamot with a rich creamy aroma.
Tasting Notes: Rich orange and cream with notes of roasty toasty oolong. While being very enjoyable on its own, this Darjeeling tea also goes well with milk and sugar.
I had this at one heaping teaspoon per 8 oz cup, for 3-5 minutes at 195F. Can be enjoyed with milk and sugar.
The leaves are a dark brown, with broad silvery twists of light leaves interspersed throughout. The black tea base is unsurprising, but the aroma certainly is. It reminds me more of a robust black tea than the typical bright, citrusy scents that I associate with an earl grey tea. Very curious. The other strange thing is the appearance doesn’t match the dark, near-black leaves pictured on the Earl Grey Windermere page – what did I get here?
After four minutes of steeping, the tea is a dark amber gold and very aromatic. The brown tea leaves have expanded, the silvery leaf tips are rehydrated, revealing themselves as bright green, plump leaves.
The green tea definitely looks like they could be the silver needle tips described in the description from Chi of Tea.
The liquor is strong and robust. It radiates warmth. I found it very satisfying. The chocolate aroma of the dry leaves mature into a smooth, mellow brow without any hints of bitterness. However, I was not too excited that it didn’t taste at all like an earl grey tea to me.
I could definitely drink it again as a strong afternoon tea with pastries or other savory snacks. I found it quite good plain, but also tried adding some milk which makes a pleasant accompaniment.
Pricing & Where to Buy
Pack Size: varying sizes, from sample to 1 pound
Price per unit: $2 for sample, $8 for 1 ounce
This tea can be purchased on the Chi of Teas website here.