So I haven’t had many straight Keemuns before, one mayyybe two and they’ve turned up in blends from time to time. So when placing my Butiki order I thought I’d give this and the finest a try so I could make a more informed decision on what I think of the “Chinese breakfast tea”.

I followed the given brewing parameters hesitantly, bringing the water up to a boil, then held my breath for a few second and poured with a high arch, but I had no need to fear. I wound up with a very nice full bodied cup with little to no astringency. This is bakey, floral, a wee bit smokey and above all balanced. Oh and shroomy! Yes, here there be mushrooms.

It’s both masculine and feminine, strong and soft, malty and perfumey and very well rounded. It’s not what I normally seek in a black tea but I am beginning to appreciate what it has to offer. Sure beats harsh English Breakfast teas, as far as my palate is concerned anyway. Off to ponder, drink and compare. Mmm love what is lingering on my tongue right now! Thanks Stacy!

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Stacy sent me a sample of this! Looking forward to seeing how it compares to the others that i’ve had :)

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Stacy sent me a sample of this! Looking forward to seeing how it compares to the others that i’ve had :)

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Druid, artist, poet, mum, lover of tea, ritual and myth. I grew up on Celestial Seasons herbals but fell in love with straight loose leaf tea working at my local Teavana for a year. I am grateful for the introduction and the experience, but have moved on.

I see tea as an experience for the senses, I like to imagine tasting the land and the weather as well as the effect of sun, air, fire and the human hand. I have a soft spot for shu pu’er, yabao, scented oolongs, wuyi oolongs, taiwanese tea as well as smooth naturally sweet blacks, creamy greens and surprisingly complex whites.

I began ordering lots of samples from Upton to educate myself on different varieties of tea we didn’t have at work and have fallen head over heels for the unique offerings from Verdant Tea. I am learning things I like: buttery mouthfeel, surprising sweet or spice notes, woodiness, mineral notes, depth and complexity and things I don’t: astringency, dry and sour notes.

I collect tea tins and am in danger of collecting pots, though I am trying to restrain the urge due to current lack of space. I brew mostly in a glass infuser mug or a tea maker, only using cast-iron for company now (still need to get a gaiwan) and tend not to sweeten my teas unless they are British or fruity and iced, which is not often.

As far as ratings, I lack a definite system and haven’t been assigning numbers lately, wanting to spend multiple sessions with a tea first. I usually only log a tea once, unless it is a new harvest or I have significantly different observations, but will go back and edit or comment if I find something interesting or new.


Baker Street, Berea, Ohio

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