Moc Chau Green Heart Oolong is a lightly oxidised oolong tea that is grown in the north of Vietnam, in Mộc Châu district of Sơn La Province. It is grown at a high altitude of around 1,100m on a small tea estate that specialises in growing Taiwanese tea cultivars. This oolong can be classed as a ‘green’ oolong as it undergoes minimal oxidation. This results in a lightly flavoured cup with brightly floral and verdant flavours. April 2018 harvest.
This Green Heart Oolong is hand processed from estate-grown tea trees. The cultivar used is called Thanh Tam locally. It is the same as the Qing Xin ‘Green Heart’ (青心) cultivar, originally brought over from Taiwan. Both Vietnam and Thailand have successful plantations utilising some well-known Taiwanese tea plant cultivars, often with the aim of imitating Taiwanese oolong tea. Most of these are exported to Taiwan or Japan. However some gardens produce some very fine teas that have a unique character of their own.
The Qing Xin cultivar is particularly known for the floral aspects of teas that are made from it. Unlike our heavily oxidised Red Buffalo Oolong and heavily roasted Dragon Breath Oolong, this tea does not undergo much oxidation at all. This means that this light oolong has a particularly floral character that is finely balanced by the greener verdant notes. It can be easily compared in style to some of the lightly oxidised floral oolongs of Taiwan.
We also feature three other Qing Xin oolongs from the same producer in Moch Chau in our shop, which all differ in their processing. It is always a good idea to taste these side by side if possible to gain a better understanding of the way tea processing can completely change the flavour of the original leaf. Our Vietnamese oolong teas from the same producer, made from the same cultivar currently are:
- Moc Chau Green Heart – minimal oxidation and minimal roasting (rolled leaf);
- Moc Chau Three Moons – medium oxidation and medium lengthy roasting (rolled leaf);
- Moc Chau Red Buffalo – heavier oxidation and medium roasting (rolled leaf);
- Moc Chau Dragon Breath – heaviest oxidation and very heavy roasting (twisted strip leaf).
This Moc Chau Green Heart oolong has green leaves that are tightly rolled, which is a typical appearance for a tea of this type. When brewed, the tightly rolled leaves unfurl producing a light yellow-green liquor that has a clear and bright appearance and a lovely floral and lightly vegetal aroma. The delicate character is not overpowering, with soft, clean and light flavours. The floral notes are nicely complimented by vegetal and creamy notes of buttered asparagus. The aftertaste has a herbaceous, sweet edge and is very smooth and clean. Overall this is a pleasantly refreshing floral oolong that is bound to find broad appeal.
We suggest brewing at 90°C for 3-4 minutes according to your taste. It can be brewed 3+ times depending on your brewing method and taste preferences.
This Moc Chau Green Heart Oolong was first featured in our April 2019 Curious Tea Subscription Boxes.