To my delight, this beautifully made tea greets me with a fruity, toasty nose. Two tsp of the loose, open blend are measured into my pre-heated, closed infuser for a 12-oz mug. The golden medium-amber liquor is smooth, with just a hint of astringency. The tea’s description begins with Keemun, so the smoke and fruit notes must hark from that Chinese region, rather than an Indian Darjeeling (more commonly used in EB blends). Quite good plain, there was only a tablespoon or two left when I added a tsp of vanilla soy milk. The result was a bit more richness and sweetness, without detracting from the true black-tea effect — a nice mix. The wholeness of the brewed leaves was attested to by how quickly the infuser rinsed out. The use of Keemun in this English Breakfast blend makes it stand out amongst the better ones I’ve tasted. It’s flavor and aroma lingered in my satisfied smile!

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Note: I’m open to offers to swap tea samples. If you can’t message me, just comment on one of my tea notes, and I’ll respond.

I am fascinated and deeply impressed by the artistry and skill which coaxes such an array of qualities from one species of leaf. In 2009, I founded San Antonio Tea & Herb Enthusiasts. In 2014, a move to Southern California creates both upheaval and new horizons. The best part is that now I live quite close to my son and his family.

For intimate tastings with a small gathering, I’m practicing Asian-style tea service along the lines of Chinese gongfu cha. It is a joy to share good tea!

The most recent sign of my conversion to the deeply-steeped side: I’ve turned three large file boxes into “tea humidors” for aging pu-erh cakes and bricks at 65% humidity. Remote sensors within the “pumidors” relay the temperature and humidity readings to a base station on my desk. It satisfies my scientist aspect and keeps tea pretty well, too.


Southern California, USA



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