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We Have Tea Too! Introducing: Ti Kuan Yin "Iron Goddess of Mercy" Oolong

Over thirty years ago, Addison Coffee Roasters was known as the Coffee & Tea Trading Company. Some of you may not know this, especially if you’ve never visited our retail location, but we still sell teas! All of our tea offerings are currently listed on our website for purchase. Click here to jump down to our fabulous new oolong description.

                                              Photo by Jason Leung, Unsplash

**Tea Packaging UPDATE:

We've recently updated our size option to a more manageable 4 oz., down from the previous 8 ouncers. We will continue to seal our teas in valved, foil-lined packages to maintain freshness, they'll just be a little smaller. **

Often, there is a great divide between coffee drinkers and tea drinkers. However, there is just as much rich history, diversity, and versatility in the tea world as there is in the coffee world. If you're new to the tea world, you might feel overwhelmed by the varieties available on the market today. Black teas, pu-erh teas, white teas, green teas, oolong teas, fruit infusions, herbal teas, and tisanes-- once you understand the basic process of tea manufacturing, it all starts to make sense.

First, black tea, pu-erh tea, white tea, green tea, and oolong tea is all from the same plant, Camellia Sinensis. These categories represent the different stages of oxidization. Oxidization is a chemical reaction that results in the browning of the tea leaves, causing distinct tastes and aromas to develop. Tea production involves the prevention, control, and arrest of this process. Given this, green tea has the least amount of oxidization, while pu-erh and black teas have the most oxidization. White teas and oolongs fall within the spectrum between these two.

On the other hand, tea infusions such as tisanes, fruit teas, and herbal teas have nothing to do with the process described above, or Camellia Sinensis at all, for that matter. Tisanes, fruit teas, and herbal teas are all “tea” infusions. It’s all rendered by the same process: something is steeped in hot water until you have a fragrant broth. Fruit infusions steep fruit and herbal “teas” steep herbs. Wait, what the heck is a tisane? It’s a pretty broad term, but basically, anything you’d use to render a beverage. This could be spices, herbs, fruits, etc. And what about Rooibos teas? Fine question! A plant native to South Africa, it’s the needle-like leaves that are used to render this delicious tisane. 

This, of course, is only scratching the surface of the vast world of teas. If you'd like to follow the rabbit hole a little further, TeaClass is a great place for novice and experienced tea drinkers alike.

Tea Farm, Photo by Paul-Vincent Roll, Unsplash

Known as "Iron Goddess of Mercy" in the West, Ti Kuan Yin (also known as Ti Guan Yin and Tieguanyin) is a wildly popular oolong tea. According to TeaClass, oolong, literally translated, means "black dragon." Landing somewhere in the oxidization spectrum between green tea and black tea, there is a lot of variety amongst oolong teas out there. Some are less oxidized than others, giving a greener hue to the rolled leaves. Oolongs can also vary dramatically in taste. 

This particular oolong has swept us off of our collective feet! It's a greener oolong with a prominent floral aroma that gives way to notes of sweet, dried apricot. The body is delicate, with a lingering finish. This is truly a meditative cup of tea if there ever was one!

If you'd like to learn how to brew oolong at home, here's a great video from ZhenTea on how to go about doing so.

"I've seen enough! Take me to the oolong!"