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A Tale of Two Keemuns…..of the Mao Feng Variety

So this is kind of my last stop for now on my tour of China black teas. Cup #12. This one was an add on, since I absolutely loved Harney’s Keemun Mao Feng, I added a 100 gram size of this onto my Upton order for Imperial Golden Monkey. One day, I will have to pick up a few Yunans and a few more Keemuns to round it all out. This is a Keemun Mao Feng comparison between Upton and Harney….

I decided to do a side by side prep of these two, just to see the differences. The dry leaf looks very similar, and the Upton smells a little sweeter dry. However, things change slightly when steeped. Both were steeped for 4 minutes with freshly boiled water from the same kettle. Both are very, very good. I would say the taste is similar except that the Upton is ever so slightly smokier. The mouth feel of the Harney is slightly thicker. If I had not tasted them side by side, I am not sure I would have noticed the subtle differences.

For taste, I do think I slightly prefer the Harney, but for value, Upton wins. The Harney & Son’s Keemun Mao Feng is $24 for 4 oz., and the Upton comes in at a great bargain of $8.20 for 100 grams (3.5 oz.) Even if I added in shipping from Upton, the cost is just a little over half of the other. Here is another case where I am not so sure the extra cost is totally worth it for the one I slightly prefer of the two. However, I am so glad I have them both in my cupboard. I do love Keemun Mao Feng!

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec
ashmanra

Thanks for comparing these! I order tons of Harney tea, and Keemun Mao Feng is a favorite of those who drink tea at my house. (I just drank a whole 22 oz. pot!) It is good to know there is a less expensive option if I want to try it.

JacquelineM

Gooooood to know! :)

SimplyJenW

ashmanra and JacquelineM….let me know if you want to try Upton’s Keemun Mao Feng and/or the Imperial Golden Monkey…..I can easily pop some in the mail.

JacquelineM

Thanks Jen! Lady Londonderry offered to send me some so I will get to taste it soon! :)

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ashmanra

Thanks for comparing these! I order tons of Harney tea, and Keemun Mao Feng is a favorite of those who drink tea at my house. (I just drank a whole 22 oz. pot!) It is good to know there is a less expensive option if I want to try it.

JacquelineM

Gooooood to know! :)

SimplyJenW

ashmanra and JacquelineM….let me know if you want to try Upton’s Keemun Mao Feng and/or the Imperial Golden Monkey…..I can easily pop some in the mail.

JacquelineM

Thanks Jen! Lady Londonderry offered to send me some so I will get to taste it soon! :)

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Bio

My motto: Drink the good tea!

Tea enthusiast, trying to keep up my cardio for the zombie apocalypse. I have come to accept that I am a western brewing black tea drinker as that is where my ‘tea heart’ lies. I started on loose leaf as a way to have my dessert and not suffer the caloric issues. Once I tried it, I was hooked.

I drink what I like, which is mostly China blacks, a few traditionally scented blacks and Earl Greys, plus a flavored tea here and there. I don’t mind spending a bit on premium varieties on occasion, but an expensive tea has to deliver. My favorite places to order are Harney & Sons and Upton Tea Imports. TeaVivre is great for Chinese tea.

My ratings are pretty subjective. If it falls under 70, I may not take the time to post about it unless I had something specific to say. If it is 70-80 I like it, but I will probably not rebuy. Favorites are over 80 and up, but sometimes the less expensive or more easily obtainable version of a similar taste will win out for my cupboard space.

Usual teapot steeping method: 24 oz teapot, 3 perfect scoops of tea (4 1/2 actual tsp), freshly boiled water, 4 minutes. Lightly sweetened.

Usual mug steeping method: 15 oz mug, 1.5 perfect scoops of tea (just over 2 actual tsp), freshly boiled water, 4 minutes. Lightly sweetened.

Usual pan method: 1 1/2 cups water, 2 perfect tsp chai (3 actual tsp). Simmer for 3 minutes. Add 2/3 cup skim milk. Simmer for 2 more minutes. Strain and sweeten.

Usual pitcher method:
5 or 6 Perfect Spoons of tea (this means about 7-9 actual tsp), freshly boiled water, brewed essentially double-strong in my 24 oz teapot for 4 minutes. Fill my Fiestaware Disc pitcher (about 60 oz.) halfway with ice. Add brewed double-strong tea to the pitcher. Stir it a little and enjoy. No additions.

(*SRP is my Sample/Stash Reduction Plan starting on April 12, 2012. I got so far, but just decided it was too fussy to keep track.)

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