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Gabacha Oolong Tea

Translation: Tea containing GABA
Alternative name: Jia Yeh
Production area: Taipei (Wen Shan) and Nantou, at an altitude of 1,300 to 2,000 feet (400 to 600 m)
Harvest season: Two weeks before and after the Duan Wu holiday, which falls on May 5 in the lunar calendar
Cultivar: Qing Xin

This tea was introduced and developed in Taiwan following Japanese research on the GABA molecule during the 1980s. According to some studies, this molecule, which is found in the human brain, helps to reduce stress and anxiety. Thanks to a special method of production that includes vacuum-processing, this tea has a very high GABA content. In addition, this unusual processing method helps to bring out a very interesting, distinctive taste.

Tasting notes: The large, irregular, twisted leaves are brown and dark red in color Their generous spicy and fruity character is delightful, even before infusion. As the leaves unfold, they release smooth fragrances of stewed fruit, nutmeg and licorice against a woody background. The balance of acidity and sweetness in the mouth combines notes of dried apricot and marmalade to which aromas of fresh tobacco and brown sugar join to produce a rounded, silky texture.

Recommended infusion method and accessory: The gong fu cha technique and a zhong or Chinese teapot.