Golden Monkey Imperial (ZY82)

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Black Tea
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Edit tea info Last updated by Rumpus Parable
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Boiling 4 min, 15 sec

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From Upton Tea Imports

ZY82 — Not to be confused with Upton’s Imperial Golden Monkey, ZP85. From Upton’s website – “While this style of tea originated in the Fujian province of China, production is spreading throughout the tea growing regions. This Yunnanese expression was crafted from a very fine plucking, consisting of well twisted leaves and golden, downy tips. The sweet aroma has a note of maple syrup. The complex cup has notes of malt, caramel, and a bit of red wine. Origin: China.”

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6 Tasting Notes

3260 tasting notes

Sipdown #3 for today, thanks to TastyBrew!

OMG, this is so good!! It’s malty, it’s rich, it’s making me think of pancakes with Maple Syrup & butter. I have never ordered from Upton, although I’ve had the pleasure of sampling several of their teas now, mainly thanks to Sil & TastyBrew, & this one is for sure a winner, & definitely on the list for when I finally place an Upton order…some day…
I want MOAR!


Sad news… That one isn’t available anymore. I’ve been hoarding my bag for like a year now since I’m so sad for the last cup, but I knew I had to share some with you :-)


It was the first straight black tea I didn’t want to alter in any way. It was my gateway tea…

Terri HarpLady

:D Now I feel especially honored!! Thanks!

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361 tasting notes

So I was having so much fun trying out my new gaiwan that I looked through my cupboard for another candidate for gongfu steeping. I brewed this one a few days ago western style and loved it so I thought I’d see what it was like using the gaiwan.

Holy snikeys! I feel like I’m totally maturing! (not too much though, obviously). I could taste differences in steeps. The first couple were what I expected and then POW caramel. Like yummy gooey caramel. It was crazy. When I brewed this western style it actually reminded me more of a hoppy pale. Now it’s like a cinnamon butter caramel. How can there be such a difference? I wonder where it will go from here.

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818 tasting notes

Swap from TastyBrew. Thanks, TastyBrew! This one smelled really good, and malty. It tasted like a really good black tea. Couldn’t really discern specific notes brewing it western style. I also added milk, so that could be the culprit, but I wanted milk this morning, so there! ;) I think I’ll try the rest of it gong fu style, since TastyBrew had such good luck with that!

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11 tasting notes

An excellent Golden Monkey offering from Upton! Caramel flavor predominates, ranging from a sort of medium intensity to very deep darker caramel notes. The dry leaves have a smell of pears, which may be an undertone to the steeped taste. Excellent as an all day, everyday tea, exceptional for relaxing and mindful tasting. Golden Monkey teas are my favorites and this one has taken the place formerly occupied by Teavana’s Golden Monkey. Steeped for 4 minutes, water at 208 degrees, 2 teaspoons of dry tea, 2.5 teaspoons of demerara sugar to 14 oz of brewed tea.

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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34 tasting notes

I’m surprised that I wasn’t crazy about this tea as I was so anxious to try it given all the rave review I’ve gotten about it from fellow tea drinkers.
The tea itself is gorgeous to look at and smells fabulous in the tin. It remindes me of a really good darjeeling in smell. When I first smelled it I was actually more excited to try it!
I may have oversteeped it at around 5 minutes?
It had an almost “green” taste at first, but then I did pick up the caramel. I didn’t think it had any maltiness and I didn’t find it to be a medium bodied tea, I would say it’s a lighter tea. It is smooth, not bitter at all. I didn’t think it paired well with the cookies I had it with.
I am going to try it again with a lesser steep time and pair it instead with fresh fruit.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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59 tasting notes

Wowie! It’s not often that I taste a black tea that doesn’t fit into any of the taste categories of black tea I already know. The dry leaves are intensely fruity and quite pretty. But the way this tea takes milk is really something special. It may be because I use a pretty-good-quality whole milk, but it doesn’t affect most teas quite like it did this Golden Monkey Imperial. The flavor of the prepared beverage was almost like a black tea ice cream. It’s smooth and not spicy like some Yunnans.

I’m sure this would be a good tea without milk, but it’s a unique experience with.

Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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