Review: Teasatia Keemun

Black Tea, Keemun Tea, Teasatia Add comments
Geoff’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"This was infringing on Lapsang Souchong territory...and doing it well."
Geoff’s Teaview: 9/10
Other Teaviews: Jamie gave it 9/10, Shaiha gave it 6.8/10, Chelsy gave it 6.2/10, Dan gave it 8.0/10, Vanessa gave it 8.7/10
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Teasatia mentions that Keemun was created in 1875 and used frequently in English Breakfast blends. This is mostly true. Of course, the EBs that had a Keemun base were top-quality. Short cut blends usually skipped the Keemun in favor of cheaper Nilgiri. Some today go for Kenyan-grown. That said, a good English Breakfast should possess Keemun and Assam leaves. Although, Keemun by itself has much to say for itself as well.

The vendor didn't mention what grade of Keemun this was, but it didn't come across as anything I was inherently familiar with. The leaves were what one would expect from a Keemun. They were dark; they were curly - I wish I had more to add there. What was a bit against type was a residual smokiness to the batch. I've heard of Keemuns being that way, but never really encountered it until now. Some sweetness was also detectable on after-whiff. I did not get any hint of plums, though, as Teasatia described it.

Brewing instructions called for a boiled water gongfu prep - oops. I was at work when I tried this, so I couldn't adhere to specifics. At my disposal were a coffee cup and 200F water from a coffee maker's spigot. Not exactly proper and/or traditional Chinese brewing utensils. By any stretch. I let it steep for four-ish minutes.

What resulted was not something I expected. Sure, it looked like a crimson-to-brown, full-bodied liquor on appearance. Steam wafting from the mouthpiece betrayed the usual astringent sweetness associated with Keemuns. But the taste completely threw me. On the forefront there was an initial sweetness - which I hoped for - but then the middle rushed in with a bold, charcoal-smoky profile. Part of this may have been my lax brew methods, but also some of that might've been the natural character of the tea. Either way, I was taken aback and floored. This was infringing on Lapsang Souchong territory...and doing it well. This is one memorable (and manly) Keemun.

— To purchase Teasatia Keemun, 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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One Response to “Review: Teasatia Keemun”

  1. JennH Says:

    Can you ask for any more than a memorable (and manly) Keemun? I don’t think so.
    Seriously, it does sound really interesting and differnt in a good way.

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