Review: Narien Teas Keemun Imperial

Black Tea, Keemun Tea, Narien Teas Add comments
Geoff’s Teaview Snapshot
Its OK"Taste-wise, I'd say it was light and nuanced, more in common with a Ceylon - behind the burnt flavor, there was a fruity tinge. Alas, the sweet aspect didn't carry over to the infusion."
Geoff’s Teaview: 5/10
Other Teaviews: Laura gave it 5.75/10, Erika gave it 5.5/10
Your Reviews:Add your review »
narienkeemunThere's a very "mysterious" - and slightly questionable - list dubbed the "China Famous Tea" hierarchy. It isn't an official by any stretch but is generally regarded as somewhat true. Or so I've read/heard/what-have-you. I took the list to be a challenge. No one put me up to it...except myself. It's lonely being a tea herd of one.

To date, I'd notched five off the list - Yunnan pu-erh, Silver Needle (or Bai Hao Yinzhen), Junshan Yinzhan (a yellow tea), Ti Kwan Yin oolong, and Dragonwell green. Jury's still out on whether the Wuyi I sampled was the coveted "Da Hong Pao", but I doubt it. Now, I can safely say I've notched off a sixth; Keemun black tea. Or "Qimen" depending on how purist you are.

I was new to Narien Teas. Can't say they ever caught my eye before. Not for lack of quality, mind you, I'm just not terribly observant sometimes. While not normally a black tea fan, I have sampled some Chinese varieties in the past that raised a brow or two. Lapsang Souchong and Yunnan varieties come to mind. The Narien site described their Keemun offering as "a full-bodied, sweet tea from the Anhui province of China. Keemun is known as the 'burgundy of teas'." One word peaked interested...


Had to have it.

Prior to steeping - as the description dictates - this was a very fruit-sweet smelling tea. It took me aback for a second, I was expecting something more...well...charred. The deep black loose leaves were surprisingly clean and aromatic. There were no specific brewing instruction on the site (always a pet peeve of mine), so I had to go with my best guess. Not always a recipe for success, but thankfully there were two cups worth in the sample. So I used 1 heaping teaspoon and infused it in 8 oz. of boiling water for five minutes, then prayed to whatever Chinese deity I could make up on fly.

The liquor was a scarlet red infusion; fairly atypical scent of a black tea, similar to a Nilgiri or Darjeeling offering. Taste-wise, I'd say it was light and nuanced, more in common with a Ceylon - behind the burnt flavor, there was a fruity tinge. Alas, the sweet aspect didn't carry over to the infusion. Not very memorable, sad to say. A decent cup, but an ordinary black tea. Maybe I'm missing something, but it didn't have a distinctive character beyond the dry scent.

Oh well. Six down. Four to go.

Find this and many other top-quality teas at Narien Teas, Inc..

Teaviews Member: Geoff Geoff Reviewer
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2 Responses to “Review: Narien Teas Keemun Imperial”

  1. In Review: May 29 - June 4 | Walker Tea Review Says:

    […] Narien Teas Keemun Imperial […]

  2. Luke Says:

    Placed an order with Narien a few days ago.. no confirmation.. no tracking number.. and a shipping policy that place responsibly for ‘lost’ parcels with the buyer. I may be a little paranoid.. but the whole thing feels a little sketchy. I will not be ordering from this merchant again.. plenty of other comparably priced tea merchants online.

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