What is Ruby oolong tea?
By Isabelle Wilkinson
What is oolong tea?
It is the process after the leaves are plucked from the Camellia Sinensis plant that determines the type and flavour profile that the tea takes on. Oolongs are semi-oxidised, meaning they fall on a spectrum of flavour between black and green teas. After the picking of the leaves, oolong teas are gently withered, cooled, rolled, oxidised, roasted, rolled again and then left to dry. Oolongs can be floral, fragrant, with distinguished flavours, whereas black teas have deeper smoky notes, honey, caramel and a deep richness. Within the oolong tea type teas still vary dramatically in terms of oxidation, with Ruby tea sitting at one end of the spectrum, as one of the most heavily oxidised ‘dark’ oolongs, and a ‘green’ oolong, such as our Four Seasons, sitting at the other. For more information about oolongs in general, read our article on everything you need to know about oolongs here.
Where our Ruby oolong is from
Our Ruby oolong is an organic, loose leaf tea, grown and produced in the mountainous region of Chiang Rai, Thailand. Our Eastern Beauty oolong is farmed close by in Doi Mae Salong; both owe much of their flavour to the region’s soft and fertile soil, which lends these oolong teas a unique sweetness. Ruby, with its tightly rolled leaves, is a heavily-fermented, full-bodied, high mountain oolong that has been slowly baked to bring out the rich flavours of cacao, raisins and black cherry and the deep red infusion from which it derives its name.
How much caffeine is in Ruby oolong tea?
The caffeine levels in any cup of tea are down to a wide range of factors, so the question is not straightforward to answer. In general, oolongs are moderately caffeinated, with less per cup than most black teas, but more than most green and white teas. To understand more about the factors that influence the caffeine levels in tea, take a read of our blog post on caffeine here.
What are the health benefits of Ruby oolong tea?
Just like other oolongs, Ruby is packed full of antioxidants, making it a healthful alternative to an afternoon coffee, without the jitters of a coffee caffeine high. Oolongs are also celebrated for their weight loss benefits, thanks to the role they play in boosting metabolism and lowering blood pressure.
How to brew Ruby oolong?
The appearance of Ruby oolong changes dramatically from dry to wet leaf, starting off as small dark ‘pearls’ before unfurling into a larger leaves after brewing. We recommend brewing 2.5g of the leaf in 200ml of 90 degree (celsius) water for four minutes. Like other oolongs, Ruby can be re-infused up to five times, with the flavour profile changing with each subsequent infusion.
How best to enjoy Ruby oolong loose leaf tea?
We like to enjoy oolongs after lunch and early evening as fuel for the last few hours of the day. Particularly delicious with a cube or two of dark chocolate.