Once a tribute tea reserved exclusively for the enjoyment of the Imperial court, Tie Guan Yin (Iron Goddess) is one of China's 10 most famous teas. Today, the term "monkey picked" simply means an oolong tea of the highest quality. Our top-grade oolong is a greener style Tie Guan Yin that is crafted to highlight the aroma side of the leaf. The leaves are fired briefly at a low temperature to release their fresh, orchid fragrance and rich, honey-like flavor.
Legend has it that monkeys were trained by monks to collect the leaves from the branches of the wild tea trees growing on steep mountainsides. Our monkey picked tea was picked and processed by masterful human hands using techniques at least two centuries old.
We highly recommend brewing Monkey-Picked Oolong in the gongfu style, using a small teapot or gaiwan, to appreciate the wonderful aromatics and the unique flavors that unfurl over many steepings. Add tea leaves to fill the teapot about one-third full and let steep approximately 50 seconds to 1 minute. Increase the steeping time by 10-15 seconds for each subsequent brew. Most oolong teas can be re-steeped 5 to 6 times in this manner.