Thursday, December 12, 2013

Teavivre: Organic Superfine Keemun Fragrant Black Tea, A Tea Review

I seem to have flip-flopped back into a nocturnal sleep schedule again, and I am ok with that because it means I am super creative. Not sure why that goes hand in hand but I seem to be much more keen on spending hours on various craft projects when they are in the wee hours of the morning. Last night I discovered that mixing Perler Beads and embroidery makes for some awesome designs, of course these observations were made with the help of copious amounts of tea.

Today's tea Organic Superfine Keemun Fragrant Black Tea by Teavivre is a beautiful Red tea (or Black tea to us Westerners) from Huangshan in Anhui, China. Fun fact, Keemun is one of China's Ten Famous Teas and is one of the prominent ingredients in English Breakfast. The aroma of this tea is a wonderful blend of earthy, floral, and muscatel. It combines the rich, loamy aroma of the forest with freshly harvested grapes and a gentle hint of squash flowers. This tea has a very pleasant and gentle aroma, even though they are all very distinct it feels more like an olfactory caress than a bombardment.

While the leaves are steeping I notice a lovely muscatel aroma filling the room, it is honey sweet and reminds me of scupernongs. The leaves out of the water still retain their muscatel aroma with notes of honey and wildflowers. The earthy notes are less pronounced in the steeped leaves, and there is a mild yeasty note at the end. The liquid's aroma is warm and sweet reminding me of honey, apple butter, and sun-warmed scupernongs. The aroma very much so reminds me of warm summer days in my Grandparent's garden.

The first thing I notice about the taste is the strong muscatel note, it is sweet and rich, again reminding me of scupernongs. There are also notes of earthiness and a slight hint of oaky astringency at the mid-taste that adds a wonderful brightness to the flavor. There is a honey sweet aftertaste that becomes more prominent as it cools. I also noticed a very slight note of squash as well which was surprising but enjoyable. As the tea cools the earthy mid-taste fades to loam which compliments the oak notes. This tea is wonderfully complex and enjoyable! I certainly recommend drinking it straight as additives would not blend well with the flavors.

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