Review: KTeas Chun Mee Green Tea

Chun Mee Tea, Green Tea, KTeas Add comments
Sophie’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"Full-bodied and robust yet remarkably smooth, this heavily brothy tea alludes to savoury and mineral flavours, with just a hint of vegetal taste. "
Sophie’s Teaview: 8/10
Other Teaviews: Vanessa gave it 7.5/10
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kteaslogoChun Mee or “Precious Eyebrows” is part of a class of green teas where the dry leaf is said to resemble an eyebrow. After being steamed and dried, each leaf is hand rolled to give it a slightly arched shape. The end result should look as thin as the eyebrows painted on a porcelain doll. While it's not exactly the case here, the small, greyish-green leaves of this Chinese tea have been tightly rolled and gently twisted. The strikingly sweet and grassy scent of the dry tea is a delicious prelude to what comes next.

Since KTeas doesn't provide brewing instructions on their site, I cast around the interwebs for directions. I finally settled on brewing one heaping teaspoon in 8 ounces of water heated to 180 degrees Fahrenheit for one minute. After just a short steep, the cup is a deep amber colour and smells vaguely chocolaty. Full-bodied and robust yet remarkably smooth, this tea is very easy to drink. There is a hint of sweetness to the cup, with plum-like notes coming to the fore. At the same time, this heavily brothy tea alludes to savoury and mineral flavours. Scallops come to mind, as do bamboo shoots slathered in butter. The KTeas website mentions that users should expect a hearty chestnut aroma. While I do detect it, the savoury notes seem to far outweigh the nuttier flavours of the tea. There is the tiniest hint of astringency to the finish, but really just enough to leave the mouth refreshed and clean-feeling.

Taking a peak into my infuser, I see that the leaves are completely unrolled after the first steep. Still, I decide that being such a robust tea, it can surely take a second infusion, if not a third. For steep number two I brewed the leaves for a minute and a half. The astringency to the finish has increased but is still reasonably pleasant. The nuttier, grain-like notes are now more prominent, rounding out the savoury aromas of the cup. A third 2 minute infusion yields a somewhat drinkable cup. Compared to the previous infusions, I found it lacking in both depth and flavour so I would forgo this last steep in the future.

Because it is so hearty, this tea can easily be paired with many strong flavoured foods. Some unusual suggestions I came across that seemed to make sense were clam chowder, barbecued meats and gorgonzola cheese. More savoury than anything, this tea will please those who like to avoid greens with too much of a vegetal taste. Although perhaps not the most subtle or sophisticated example of Chun Mee out there, this is definitely a satisfying tea and a great value with its low price tag. Well done!

— To purchase KTeas Chun Mee Green Tea, or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

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