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Oolong at the Lemongrass

January 08, 2007

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I will confess to you that I’ve had a hard time identifying with oolong tea. But I’ve had some new experiences with it that are slowly changing the way I think about it.

We live fairly close to a Seattle restaurant called Lemongrass, Taste of Vietnam and I was in there over the holidays with some friends of mine, and it was the first time I recalled being able to identify oolong tea, specifically. I know I’ve consumed it many times in various Asian restaurants, but over the years I mistakenly assumed it was just another variant of green tea.

The bottomless pot at Lemongrass features a very lovely oolong, and after our meal we sat and talked over a fresh pot, and I couldn’t leave it alone. It has a very floral aroma, and a solid, earthy taste with no bite.

I’m fighting the urge to make this a restaurant review, but I can’t recommend this place enough – especially the mango salad, which was suggested by the proprietor. There isn’t much information on the web, so I can’t give you much more than the link above, but they certainly deserve mention for providing me with my first real appreciation for oolong tea.

I have several varieties from The Teacup that are currently enticing me – Goddess Oolong (earthy), Green Dragon oolong (honey), and Tie Kuan Yin oolong (floral). My husband and friends came home after a long afternoon of snowshoeing on Saturday, and we ordered cheap Chinese takeout. I brewed a large pot of the Tie Kuan Yin to accompany it, and it was a huge hit with the whole crowd. I think I’m on to something!

Next step: I need to season my yixing pot so I can properly dedicate it to oolong tea.

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