Sample package label:
“USDA Organic, Fair Trade certified
Suggested Steeping Guide:
One generous tsp. / 212*F / 3-5 minutes”
Introduction: Kevin @ The Whistling Kettle first introduced me to Keemun tea: http://steepster.com/looseTman/posts/152917#likes I’ve purchased several pounds from him and have thoroughly enjoyed it. When I saw that Arbor Teas offers two different organic Keemun teas, I had to sample them. This first review is of the more cost-effective one.
Technique: 8-oz water with total dissolved solids (TDS) of 21 ppm, heated to 212*F
1 “generous” Tevanna teaspoon, without sweeteners, milk or cream.
This tea has a mild smoky fragrance.
1st cup: I first followed the brewing recommendations and after 5 minutes this Keemun was medium-bodied – not what I expected.
2nd cup: I kept everything the same but reduced the water to 6 oz. and it was too strong.
3rd Cup (8 oz. water & 1 Heaping tsp.):
3-min Initial Impression: The taste is light & smooth. It’s not at all bitter or astringent. (I then let it steep for an additional minute.)
5-min: It’s a smooth, full-bodied breakfast tea with a prominent roasted quality that overshadows the subtle wine-like Keemun flavor.
Impression: A cost-effective, smooth, full-bodied, organic Keemun.
Suggestion: With this tea, I used most of the sample to find the optimum balance of water & tea. This results in less of an opportunity to explore the subtleties of the tea. Using teaspoon measurements such as “rounded”, “generous”, “heaping”, etc. are sometimes too imprecise. Adding the weight of tea in grams to the brewing recommendations would be helpful and more time efficient.
(This tasting experience reminds me, I need to find a good digital tea scale. Does anyone have a recommendation?)
Thanks to Arbor Teas and Aubrey for providing this overstuffed free sample.