Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: JAS eTea
This Yunnan varietal of Black tea is created from highest grade small bud Feng Qing spring season tea. Early spring tea is picked when the buds are still young, the tea is then rolled, briedly fermented and then wok-dried by hand. The flavor is the smoothest of any Black tea I have ever tasted. Since this tea is nearly one year old is in its prime stage for drinking. Yunnan Black tea is best when it is 12 months to 24 months in age.
I’m finding myself a little lost for words right now – which is rather unusual for me! (Yeah, I have been known to be a bit long-winded sometimes.) But, WOW! This tea is so amazing that I’m a little speechless!
The dry leaves are beautiful – gold in color, wispy thin, long and curly. They don’t give off much of a fragrance when they’re dry. When brewed, these lovely leaves create an enchanting golden brown liquor that is mildly fragrant, smelling a little spicy, a little flowery and fruity, and even a little bit earthy.
The flavor is smooth – perhaps the smoothest Yunnan I’ve yet to encounter. There is a light peppery kick to it though, which is something I love about Yunnan teas and have come to expect – and feel a little disappointed when I don’t get that pepper note. Fortunately, with this tea it’s there.
There is a nice complexity to this tea. There is a nice fruity note to it, almost plum-like, but also a bit of apricot… and it almost tastes like a fermented version of these fruits. It is sweet with a pleasant astringency and no bitterness.
Allow this tea to cool just slightly after it’s been brewed (not too much – just to a drinkable temperature) and then, enjoy it as it’s warm. I find that the flavors enhance greatly as I continue to sip it when it’s warm, but, as it gets cold, some of that exquisite flavor is lost. Because of this, I recommend brewing it in small batches (use your gaiwan for this one!) and enjoy it when it’s at its full flavor. It has sweetness to the liquor so you needn’t add anything to it… enjoy it in it’s plain and perfected state!
Anne started her journey with tea as a casual drinker and became more serious about her tea drinking when she realized that she couldn't drink coffee. Shortly thereafter, she started becoming obsessed with the beverage and she started creating small-batch, artisan blends of tea that she sold online as LiberTEAS. After a few years, she realized she wasn't cut out to be the sole proprietor of a business so she closed LiberTEAS and started reviewing teas online. She met Jennifer through another blog that they both reviewed for and they decided to start their own review blog. This review blog!
Throughout her journey as a tea reviewer, she discovered 52Teas and became enamored with the idea of creating a new tea every week. When the founder of 52Teas decided he wanted to move on, he offered the business to Anne but knowing that she wasn't cut out to be a sole proprietor, she instead offered the company to her oldest daughter who employs her as the Mad Tea Artist for 52Teas!
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