Oolong Teas

Written by Seth Cotterell
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Where white tea is made from young leaves and processed little, oolong tea is an "older" tea and requires greater processing. I call it an older tea because instead of harvesting the leaves while they are young and covered with white down, oolong tea is made from tea leaves that have been allowed to grow and develop to greater levels of maturity.

Processing Oolong Tea

When the leaves are old enough, they are harvested for preparation. White tea leaves are simply steamed and dried, but oolong tea leaves go a step beyond. When the leaves are harvested, they are allowed to wither so they loose their moisture. Rather than being dried in the sun like white tea, oolong tea is dried in more shady spots. Once this is done, the leaves are put through a fermentation process and are ultimately semi-fermented.

Processing tea in this way gives it many unique qualities. Oolong tea tastes like no other tea. Its semi-fermented nature gives oolong a much longer-lasting taste. The delicious aftertaste of this tea will stay with you considerably longer than the delicate, weaker flavor of some other teas. It ends up tasting much fruitier than other teas processed in different ways.

One of the main reasons tea has been consumed for 5,000 years is because of its natural health benefits. Tea is one of the healthiest drinks imaginable and different teas are used to treat different ailments. Oolong tea is used as a natural way to lower cholesterol levels. It has also long been prescribed as an aide for indigestion.

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