Eco-Cha’s High Mountain Concubine Oolong Summer 2014

 (Tea Provided For Review)

Today I decided to look at Eco-Cha’s High Mountain Concubine Oolong.

Origin: Shan Lin Xi,  Nantou
Harvest: Summer 2014
Elevation: 1500m

Dry Leaves: There is quite a lot of variance in the dry leaves, as you can see towards the left is a rather large strangely shaped ball and then there are some fairly normal sized pellets. There is a strong vegetable aroma to the leaves, quite interesting since many of the teas I tried so far from Eco-Cha have been more savory/herbaceous than floral and there is a foresty smell as well.

First Steeping
Temperature: Boiling
Brewing Time: One Minute
Aroma: Cooked Kale, Almonds and Vegetable Broth
Flavor: Almonds, Pine, Vegetal and Orchid
Tasting Notes: I was surprised by the very light orchid taste this tea has, as I said before I like that Eco-Cha’s oolongs aren’t predominantly floral; I don’t know if non-floral oolongs are becoming rare or if I am just looking in the wrong places. Otherwise it is quite nice, it has a thin mouthfeel for a high mountain oolong, but it is quite pleasant nonetheless.

Second Steeping
Temperature: 190oF
Brewing Time: Two Minutes
Aroma: Pine and Fir    
Flavor: Almonds, Pine and Vegetal
Tasting Notes: The floral notes have completely disappeared and the aroma has become both distinctly Pine and Fir. I was quite surprised that it smells so similar to the two trees definitely brought me back to walking through the woods on the way to class. The tea is a little crisper then the previous steeping, I almost want to say sharp, but not quite.

Third Steeping
Temperature: 195oF
Brewing Time: Three Minutes
Aroma: Pine and Redwood
Flavor: Almonds and Honey
Tasting Notes: It is much simpler by now, the pine taste and vegetable tastes have disappeared as well as the fir scent. This time there is a little bit of redwood in there and a honey taste as well. This might have been my favorite steeping even though it is by far the simplest.

Unfortunately at the time of writing this, this particularly tea is sold out, otherwise I would have bought a bit of it. While I still have a couple samples left from Eco-Cha I immediately wanted to buy this again. I suppose I’ll have to wait to the next harvest before getting this again. Eco-Cha is really starting to grow on me, while I do love Beautiful Taiwan Tea for their floral oolongs; I am rather fond of the herbaceous/savory oolongs I’ve tried from Eco-cha.  I am a little curious if this tea will age well, I’ve been told in the past that generally lower quality oolongs age better than the higher quality ones, but I am considering buying some of the next harvest of High Mountain Concubine and hiding it away for a while. 


Just a guy who likes tea.