2511 Tasting Notes
Here’s my 2nd Keemun of the day, & based on previous experience with Keemun teas, this is actually more like what I expect a Keemun to taste like. It’s earth, leather, smoke, a little plum tartness., & a touch of brown sugar. It’s like the library of some pipe smoking english gentleman. There’s a little bit of a bite, & then a lingering satisfaction.
Thanks again to Teavivre for this sample, & this is my 2nd sipdown of the day, leaving me with 327 teas in my cupboard!
So today is Day 2 of The Qimen Quandery. Whether you choose to spell it Qimen or Keemun, this tea is produced in the Qimen County of Huangshan City, in Anhui (Anhwei) province. According to Wikipedia, “it was first produced in 1875 by a failed civil servant, Yu Ganchen, after he traveled to Fujian province to learn the secrets of black tea production. Prior to that, only green tea was made in Anhui. The result exceeded his expectations, and the excellent Keemun tea quickly gained popularity in England, and has since been used as a prominent ingredient in some blends of English breakfast tea.”
So this is my 3rd tea of the Qimen Quandery, having sampled 2 others yesterday. Of course, the purpose of this is to sample all of my keemuns & determine which ones I love the most, & what I love the most about them.
I would say that compared to the other 2 (Organic Superfine Fragrant & Premium Hao Ya, both from Teavivre), this one is more tart & slightly smokier, although it is not a full on smokiness. There is a plum-like fruitiness to it, and a deeper earthiness as well. There is also more astringency here, although that may in part be due to my using too hot of water. The resteep was bland.
Thanks to Teavivre for this sample, which is a sipdown! (328)
Day 2 of Ms. Theresa’s Breakfast Blend Protocol.
Purpose: to sample all of my breakfast blends, one per day, until I arrive at a clear favorite. Maybe a few favorites. They may all turn out to be favorites.
So this was the breakfast tea of the day, & I can say for a fact that this isn’t a tea I should drink a lot of before breakfast, as it’s just too bright & hard on my tummy. However, with breakfast, this is great! It is bold & malty, as it’s name implies, & there is a bright floral edge that I have mixed feelings about. The mid-section is a chewy rustic slice of sourdough rye bread. The resteep is a mere shadow of itself.
I spent the later part of the afternoon & most of the evening sipping multiple short steepings of this Sheng, shared generously by Tea Explorer. Thanks!
The early steepings really did have an apricot scent, with a spiciness to it. The flavor built up in tartness in the early steeps, & then gradually mellowed.
I enjoy shengs, but I don’t always know what to say about them.
Part 2 of Ms Theresa’s new protocol, which is to drink & compare Keemuns, since we have several in our collection. So after breakfast teas, Keemuns are sort of the black tea of the week. I’m not gonna try to drink them all in one day, I’ve decided the flavors get muddled in my tastebuds if I do it that way. I’ll just drink my way through them as my 2nd tea of the day for awhile.
This one is the current favorite, a lovely smooth tea with a subtle taste of chocolate & a hint of roses. Some Keemuns are more smoke & brown sugar, which I also love, but this one is not.
Ms. Theresa has decided our next tea drinking protocol will be to linger over various tea varietals, to determine which ones are worthy to be in our cupboard. She described it as an Olympics of teas. We’re starting this today, with a couple of different pathways, the first one being “Breakfast Blends”.
The protocol here is that we’ll be drinking a different breakfast blend for awhile, as the first cup of the day. There is no rhyme or reason to the order of teas drank, or anything like that, we just want to try all of our breakfast blends, & there are several, enjoying each one for what it is, culling out any we don’t really care for (as if there will be any), & if any of them stand out as superlative, they will be elevated to some level of glory, although that may or may not really happen, LOL.
This one is interesting, in that it seems to be a little different every time I have it. Sometimes I adore it, & other times it is a little too bright. Today it’s been very satisfying: A bold bass, a grapey brightness, a little more astringent than I tend to like, but with an earthy midsection as it cools that I love. I don’t have much left, & I still really want to compare it to the newer version. I guess I need to do something about that.