These tight pearls present something of a puzzle: rolled like oolong, dark like black tea, and with an aroma somewhere in between. Perhaps not surprisingly, they are indeed a true cross between the styles: an almost completely oxidised oolong. As 'mixiang wulong', it is normally a Taiwanese style, but our old friend Master Chen
is producing it with Jinguanyin leaves in Anxi. Hot water unlocks a wave of warm flavours wafting over the palate, bringing notes of boysenberry, the powdery florality of pomelo blossoms, the spiciness of nutmeg, and, naturally, its namesake honey scent. Though it might give tea purists pause, such hybrids offer characters difficult to find elsewhere. Serving suggestions: while making a collage and listening to jazz-funk.