Review: White August Tea Golden Monkey

Black Tea, White August Tea Co. Add comments
Geoff’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"It's a damn good golden black. "
Geoff’s Teaview: 9.5/10
Other Teaviews: Vanessa gave it 8/10, Lynn gave it 10/10, Sophie gave it 8.9/10, Laura gave it 9.25/10, Chelsy gave it 8.5/10
Your Reviews:Add your review »
I had seen White August mentioned in passing throughout my Steepster dealings. A few of their teas were rated highly and often. So, when they finally came into review circulation, I naturally had to appease my growing curiosity. What did I choose? should be obvious by now that anything with the word "gold" in the title grabs my attention immediately. I went for their Golden Monkey.

Golden Monkey is a Fujian Province-grown black tea that - some sources claim - inspired the birth of Keemun black tea. Golden Monkey is to black tea what Silver Needle is to white. I don't quite find it as heavenly as, say, Yunnan-grown Jin Cha (Gold Bud), but it comes pretty darn close. Two different Golden Monkey options have graced my lips. Oddly enough, though, I never found them to be that gold. If anything, they were sporadic in their gold-tipped presentation, like an autumn flush Darjeeling - still wonderful, but not pure gold. White August's Golden Monkey, however, was brighter than any I'd seen. If not for the size of the leaves (small-to-medium needles), I would've thought this was a Yunnan Gold. The brisk, malty, caramel-honey aroma was also similar.

White August's brewing FAQ recommended boiling water and a four-to-six-minute steep. I agreed with the temp (sorta), but not the time. Personal brewing preference taught me that I preferred my black teas at a three-minute steep. Yunnan Golds worked at 190F best to bring out the honey notes. I decided to do the same with this Golden; 1 heaping teaspoon in 8oz.

At three minutes, the liquor brewed oolong gold-ish but with a very strong black tea nose. I refer back to my autumn flush comparison; the aroma was something like that, malty and muscatel. Caramel was also distinctly present. The taste echoed White August's apricot comparison to the letter. In fact, this was the most boldly apricot cup I've ever tried. There was also something else about it that reminded me of candied yams dipped in honey.

A second steep - and ooooh yes, there had to be a second steep - yielded a slightly darker liquor. The aroma took on more malt than muscat grape. And the taste emboldened to match the malty scent. I was more reminded of unsweetened molasses licked by the drip, but with a bit of a dry kick. At this point, I'm just rambling. It's a damn good golden black.

— To purchase White August Tea Golden Monkey, 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.

Teaviews Member: Geoff Geoff Reviewer
» Read more about this reviewer on Geoff's profile page.
» Find a list of recent posts by Geoff.


Leave a Reply

My Rating

WP Theme & Icons by N.Design Studio
Entries RSS Comments RSS Log in