King Red” is organically grown and produced in the Quimen area of Anhui Province. Quimen is comprised of villages and towns in a small geographic area defined by mountains and steep slopes cut and nourished with streams of fresh water. True Keemuns are made from the “Zhuye” varietal. This tea is unique in its flavors. Its' leaves are cut thin and, with oxidization, its oils deepen and combine giving this black a distinct sweetness and aroma. Its liquor is a bright red, claret-like, with a pleasing bouquet.
Why we selected this lot. Our lot is “gongfu” or “congou” grade (Standard 1121) made with disciplined skill keeping the thin leaves intact and uniform in size, a factor in developing a smooth taste. It has become increasingly difficult to source good quality organic Keemun as the domestic market increasingly enjoys this tea. This lot has a good balance of winey flavors and a camphor-like aroma. Excellent with toast, spicy foods, as a digestive, it also serves well as a refreshing cup anytime of the day.
Interesting facts about this lot. Keemuns are referred as to as the "Burgundy" of China's red teas because of its superb bouquet. It is also one of China's 10 most famous teas. Keemun's are made to various grades and shapes. Our King Red is a comparatively high grade.
Taste profile. Long recognized as a superb breakfast tea, it is often served under the name English Breakfast. King Red offers very pleasing, full-bodied & strong flavors to the palate; some with hints of fruit flavors in the finish. This is a well-made lot, offering fragrant, nuanced tastes with a finish that will linger and warm. For those that prefer it, Keemuns can take milk and sugar.
Brewing suggestions. A rounded teaspoon for 8-12 ounces should provide a round cup flavor. Use water at 195 -205 F and steep the leaves for 2.5 to 3 minutes and taste. The flavors of this tea should be open by not steeping too long & preserving its winey flavor side. Leaves will steep 2-3 times.