What is Oolong?
Oolong 🍵 | Oolong tea is the most versatile tea category in the world. Unlike un-oxidized green teas and fully oxidized black teas, oolong tea can be oxidized to different levels - from 5-99%. Our goal is to take you on a journey of exploring every single percentage of uniqueness that Taiwanese teas can offer.
Key points - ROASTING & OXIDATION
ROASTING - How Does Roasting Affect the Taste of Your Oolong?
Roasting oolong tea takes the fragrance and aroma of un-roasted oolong and brings more body and complexity to the tea. Roasted oolong tea does not mean its better than unr-oasted. It simply means a roasted one carries more balanced and full flavor, in contrast, un-roasted oolong is more fresh and light to drink.
🍂 Un-roasted - High mountain oolong teas are generally un-roasted to keep the natural aromatic oils in the leaf. Un-roasted tea means the tea does not go through long-duration baking under low temperature.
🍂 Light roasted - By lightly roasting a tea, it transforms the character of a tea from fresh-green to a mellowed, and more full-bodied brew. A lightly roasted tea has gone through 1-2 intervals of being baked for long intervals at low temperature. By roasting a tea, the shelf of the tea leaves increases.
🍂 Heavily roasted - Heavily roasted tea delivers a hearty, bold character that can endure multiple brews. This kind of tea has gone through long hours of baking under low temperature. Often times, artisans will increase the heat in finals hours of roasting the ensure a fully balanced roasted flavor.
OXIDATION - WHAT DOES IT MEAN WHEN YOU SEE THE WORD OXIDATION IN YOUR TEA PACKAGING? 🌱🌱
Oxidation is a chemical reaction involving oxygen. Like a riped banana, this reaction not only results in browning of the substance but also the creation of new chemical compounds at a molecular level.
There are 2 kinds of oxidation - one being natural and the other controlled. Natural oxidation occurs the moment a tea leaf is plucked off, activating oxidative enzymes and releasing aromatic compounds in the leaf. Controlled oxidation happens when oxidation has been increased due to higher room temperature, humidity, and physically breaking the leaf's epidermis. Oxidation is then stopped when oxygen is removed from the leaf. To remove oxygen, the most common way is to store tea in vacuum-sealed or light-proof container. Another way is by changing the oxidation level of enzymes by adding heat, whether by steaming, pan-frying, or baking.
✨ NOTE ✨
Oolong tea can not be fully oxidized, as oxidation halts when the right parameters are reached. A fully oxidized tea would be stale and unpleasant to drink.💡💡
5 Reasons Why Oolong Tea is Healthier Than Other Types of Tea?
While people these days are obsessed about matcha and green tea, oolong tea has ample of health benefits that can help improve your health. Various studies have been conducted to prove the health benefits of drinking oolong. Whether it’s enjoyed hot or cold, oolong is a great refreshment and healthy drink option that can be consumed daily.
1. Stimulates Weight Loss
Green tea is often a go-to for weight loss due to its high level of anti-oxidant. Oolong tea also has high anti-oxidant content, which can help boost your body’s ability to burn fat and increase your metabolism even in the presence of a high-sugar diet. When compared to drinking 2 cups of green tea, those who drank the same amount of oolong burned over 157% more fat and up to 134 calories. For this reason, popular weight loss programs tend to recommend oolong tea.
2. Promotes Healthy Heart
Oolong can promote heathy heart by improving blood pressure levels and reducing the risk of stroke. A study conducted on 76,000 Japanese adults show that those who drank more than 8oz of oolong daily had a 61% lower risk of heart disease. However, drinking large amount of oolong can be counterproductive given it contains some caffeine.
3. Prevents Cancer
Oolong is very high in anti-inflammatory polyphenols. These polyphenols can free radicals in the body, stifling the activation of cancerous cell growth. Research conducted at the University of California showed a 50% reduction in free radicals after participants drank oolong for 15 days.
4. Reduces Stress Levels
Tea-lovers have long believed that if you’re upset or anxious, it pays to make a brew. A study by the Academy of Traditional Chinese Medicine found that those who drank 4 cups of oolong tea everyday for a week had significantly less stress.
5. Builds Stronger Bone
A study looked at 680 elderly Japanese women to evaluate whether oolong could strengthen their bones. Findings show that those who drank oolong tea had greater bone density in areas that connect the leg to hip socket. Given that hip fracture is a common condition among the elderly, oolong tea can be a healthy addition for stronger bones.