Hong Tao Keemun (ZK12)

Tea type
Black Tea
Chinese Keemun Black Tea
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Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by Rumpus Parable
Average preparation
Boiling 4 min, 15 sec 12 oz / 354 ml

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From Upton Tea Imports

A mellow tea in the style of An Hui province Keemun. Classic Burgundy notes with a characteristic mild smoky note. The liquor is smooth, with a lingering, sweet finish.

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7 Tasting Notes

985 tasting notes

Tea of the morning….. (SRP #31)

I have been in a blur for the last several days. It is nearing the end of school and it has been a whirlwind of band and orchestra concerts, play performances, tryouts for another play and a youth wind symphony, and prep for a class trip to Washington DC. Plus, we are in the midst of repairs on our house from some storm damage last year. We are trying to do the painting ourselves in between the days that the contractors are here, and more things that need fixing always seem to come up. I guess it is probably a normal pace for some, but it is usually pretty quiet around here. As a result of my crazy schedule, I have mostly been drinking favorites. I have a few new teas to review that I have tried over that time, but I need to sample them again when I am less distracted to do them justice.

Onto this particular tea…. I was kind of surprised at how short the leaves were. They are similar to BOP with a few golden tips. After my first several sips, I think I might be replacing my beloved Organic Keemun Heng Ru with this. It is somewhere between Heng Ru and Keemun Mao Feng. It is much smoother and fuller tasting than the Heng Ru. Very light hints of smoke. Cocoa notes. I just feel the Heng Ru lacks body, and this one has it. Love it!

Usual mug method.

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

Hope you have a pith helmet and aspirin!


I’m still planning to replenish my stock of Heng Ru, but I think I’ll have to get at least a sample of this one too. :)

Good luck weathering this hectic time!

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259 tasting notes

This one is a bit finicky to brew just right, I somehow remember more chocolate notes in the previous pot. Today’s brew was slightly chocolate and astringent to finish. The second steep is just ok. I would purchase this again, but its not in my list of top keemuns.

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6 tasting notes

A bit too bland and smokey for my taste

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2816 tasting notes

Another day, another keemun sample, but I believe this is the last of the lot. I’ve been trying to train my palette but I would not say I am a keemun lover yet. The dry leaf smells slightly “tangy” with a hint of smoke.

Brewed the tea for 3 minutes via regular teapot method. It might have needed a bit more time but this keemun is nice. It’s a little more gentle than some I’ve tried. I’m getting a lot of winey/fruity notes with a slight hint of smoke. There’s a bit of bitterness in the finish which I am not altogether enjoying but it isn’t unbearable. I suppose it’s a testament to how I feel about keemuns in general that I thought this was better with some vanilla soymilk.

Not bad at all, but also not something I would bother to stock on a regular basis. I might try blending it too.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
7 tasting notes

This is my current go-to Keemun tea. Nice and smooth, with pretty classic Keemun flavor. A tad smokey, a little fruity, very smooth, nice tannins without being ridiculous. It’s relatively forgiving of oversteeping, but it can get pretty heady if you let it go too far. I like it with a little sugar or truvia.

Highly recommended.

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

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