Review: Blue People Oolong
A tea oddity, Aroma Tea Shop’s Blue People Oolong resembles green pebbles more than tea due to its curious preparation. The flavor in this tea is strong and intense – the tea shop describes it as a “party in your mouth!” Despite giving the tea the benefit of the doubt, this reviewer did not find it so…
Here is how Aroma Tea Shop describes this tea on their website:
This is one of our top sellers! Being a new style tea from Taiwan, it is an Oolong tea that is fermented with mint and liquorice root. The result creates an amazing sweet front taste and a long and lingering intense aftertaste. It has been described as being like a “party in your mouth!” The appearance of the tea looks like little blueish pebbles, creating the name “Blue People”.
Health Benefits & Remedies: Being fermented with mint and liquorice root, it promotes the metabolism, by helping digestion. Eases headaches and dizziness, promotes focus and awareness.
Use 1 tablespoon per 8-10oz pot, using 208F water or above, meaning the water is boiling. Steep for 2 minutes and serve. Makes up to 4-5 infusions.
*Remember to always CLEAN YOUR TEA, ALL TEAS, ANY TEAS! Pour in the hot water, and right away pour out the water to do a quick rinse on the tea. The reason is because the tea has been out in the open. There is dust, or dirt, or who knows what might been in there before it became packaged for retail. It is the same idea as cleaning your rice. Also, after you rinse of the tea with the hot water, it actually opens the tea a lot faster, and it also opens up the aroma. So if you had guest, you would right away allow your guest to smell the tea, once you poured out the first round.*
Taste & Appearance
This is perhaps not what you tea reviewers want to read but the unfortunate and irrational first thought that crossed my mind on seeing this tea was: rabbit droppings! And who would want to drink that?!
On that note, to the tasting. At the first cleansing rinse, the smell that hits you is a strong aroma of licorice and sweet plum. The liquor steeps to a clear light brown yellow. The scent of licorice is strong and there’s the slightest sheen of oil at the top of the liquid.
At first sip, the taste isn’t unpleasant. But I couldn’t make it past the first few sips. The sweet plum flavor is almost syrupy, coating the tongue and mouth with a lingering sweetness that continues well into the aftertaste. Just too strong and sweet for me.
After the first steep, the layer of powder has dissolved and there are clearly identifiable tea leaves. They are dark and still very tightly furled.
Undeterred, I continued. The second steeping was quite similar, with the initial flavors more muted. I’m sure if you really like the flavors of licorice and plum, this might appeal to you. The subsequent steepings just are more watery and diffuse versions of the first. Interestingly, after a few steepings some of the tea pebbles expand into what is very reocognizably tea leaves. However, some of the pebbles stay compressed and crumbled into a wet powder as I attempted to open them.
The underlying oolong tea is not really recognizable under the overpowering flavor of the spices. While it packs a very strong initial flavor punch, this tea lacks all subtlety and nuance to flavor which I appreciate in oolongs. Alas, just not my cup of tea.
Pricing & Where to Buy
You can buy this tea from Aroma Tea Shop’s website here. Price is 4 oz at $27.