A friend (and former coworker) named Jessica brought a little can of Hawaiian oolong into Teacup (my work) to share with us. She said a friend of hers had bought it on a recent trip to the Big Island.
While researching my original Hawaiian tea post I emailed several farmers who seemed extremely passionate and knowledgeable about their teas. They mainly seem focused on producing small quantities of superb tea for connoisseur buyers. In fact, one farmer claimed that her best tea fetches $1 per gram ($453 per pound). I'm hoping to try her tea next spring when she has fresh tea ready.
The dry leaves of the Hilo Coffee Mill tea (currently the only Hawaiian tea I have ever tasted) are twisted and voluminous. Their colors range from black to orange to forest green. They have a sweet, earthy smell that is reminiscent of fallen Autumn leaves.
The dry leaf:
The first flavor most people picked up was intense rich, raw, fresh honey. Beyond that, delicate notes of volcanic minerals, raisins, and tropical flowers could be detected.
The tea soup:
In other news, Seattle is still buried in snow!
Check out what Alanna and I made today: