Camellia and Vine tea hosted a beautiful and unique workshop on 2nd April featuring the Flavour of Formosa (*the name given to Taiwan by Portuguese sailors in the 16th Century) through three sets of flavours: floral, fruity and woody. Those were from Taiwanese inspired street food, Taiwanese oolong teas and natural wines around the world.
Floral, fruity and woody are three typical flavours that can easily be detected in wine and tea. During the workshop, Founder and Chief Educator Leona De Pasquale, who is a WSET Diploma Holder, Approved Aroma Academy Trainer and UK Tea Academy Certified Tea Sommelier, selected three Taiwanese oolong teas with different oxidation levels to compare with three low intervention wines.
First up, a Four Seasons Oolong Tea famous for its perfumed floral aromas compared with an organic dry Muscat white wine.
The Oolong Tea presents charming spring garden aromas of white blossoms and grassy notes. It was harvested in Spring 2021 in Nantou, a famous tea region in Central Taiwan and was compared with an organic dry Muscat, Doña Leo, Manchuela, Spain, 2020 from Bodegas Altolandon made by female winemaker Rosalia Molina that has white flowers, roses and orange peel with herbs notes and a pleasant bitterness on the finish. Together they paired fantastically with Seaweed Crackers and Osmanthus Rice Cake made by female Taiwanese Chef Long from Bellong Dining.
The fruity set that follows features a “Chin Shin” Oolong Tea, handpicked in Spring 2021 in Nantou Taiwan. “Chin Shin” is a tea cultivar famed for its fruity notes. The tea has honey, apricot, floral and pineapple notes, which was compared with an orange wine from Romania: Solara, Orange, Viile Timisului, Romania, 2021 that has beautiful quince, Poire William and a hint of vanilla. A complex and structured wine, with elegant but discreet fruit flavours of stone fruits, backed up with a powerful tannin structure and long finish. This goes well with the Taiwanese Nigiri as the Umami notes from the Nigiri (seaweed, rice and fish) complement perfectly with the fruity note of both the tea and the orange wine.
Lastly, the woody set features dark baked Taiwanese oolong. This is semi-oxidised and then heavily backed to shape the roast aromas. Very bold and robust, contrasted by a natural sweet red wine from Domaine Mas Amiel, Olivier Decelle, Maury, France. The wine has dark chocolate, wild fruits, figs, liquorice and tobacco leaves. Very complex but equally refreshing and delicious. This went amazingly well with the Roasted Han-tsî (sweet potato), a common simple Taiwanese sweet snack turn into a beautiful dessert in Chef Long’s hand, which wowed the attendees.
Another highlight of the workshop is two Sparkling teas from the Copenhagen Sparkling Tea company.
Sparkling Tea BLÅ was served as an aperitif that starts out with delicate aromas of Jasmine, chamomile and a hint of citrus. RØD was served at the end, which has immediate notes of red berries, Hibiscus, blackberries and a balanced taste of citrus. This is followed by a light bitterness from the bergamot oil found in our Lady Grey and Earl Grey teas.
One of the guests commented: “I love the pairings and creative linkage between food, tea and wine. It's one of the most inventive and sensual tasting experiences in London. It is expertly facilitated and explained.”
We are pleased with the overwhelming good feedback from the participants and we look forward to hosting more of such events.
Photo Credit: https://www.instagram.com/llongstagram/