This Yunnan of ours evokes an earthiness characteristic of most Yunnan teas, with some sweetness, edging toward maple syrup. The Dark caramel looking liquor carries through in flavors matching with the aromas.
One could say that if Keemuns are the aristocrats of Chinese black teas, Yunnan teas are the poor, but happy cousins. Earthy, almost gutty and assertive, the teas also have a sociable maple sweetness to give them accessible charm. This sugared note makes for an instructive contrast to the sophisticated, subdued chocolate flavors of Keemuns. The maple and chocolate notes are both products of the Maillard reaction that occurs during firing, when amino acids and glucosides in the leaves combine to form compound called “pyrroles” and “pyrazines”, chemicals that have sweet roasted flavors.
Yunnan black teas come from a remote region of China on the border of Laos and Burma, where tea is argued to have originated. Most teas from this region are aged to make Pu-Erhs. Pu-Erhs have become so popular, it’s geting harder to find unaged, ordinary Yunnan black tea, but it is definitely worth the search!