Tongmu Reserve Jin Jun Mei

Tea type
Black Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Almond, Bread, Honey, Malt, Mineral, Vanilla, Wood, Butter, Cacao, Cream, Dates, Dried Fruit, Molasses, Pleasantly Sour, Rose, Smoke, Spicy, Umami
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Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Scott
Average preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 5 oz / 141 ml

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4 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Here we have another sample I held on to for some time. Prior to today, I seemed to always be looking for the right time to try it. This most certainly should not have been the day. The frequent...” Read full tasting note
    83
  • “I find this tea to be fascinating. I brought some home for our annual family New Year’s eve dinner, and the first impression is … wait for it….PETTING ZOO!! HA, yes it does smell a bit like a...” Read full tasting note
    89
  • “For a key to my rating scale, check out my bio. Delicious, savory black tea. Smooth and balanced with considerable complexity. Miso soup, cacao nibs, and melted butter. $71 USD / 100g.” Read full tasting note
    79
  • “It’s like drinking honey, minus the sweetness. Very little astringency. Perfect any time of day. It’s the one I always give to people who either aren’t into tea or who say they don’t like it. An...” Read full tasting note
    90

From Verdant Tea

Li Xiangxi’s old family home is nestled deep in Tongmu in a protected ravine above Longchuan Gorge with wild bamboo, orange trees and flowers growing around the wild tea bushes. Once a year in the early spring, Li Xiangxi and her family pick the tiny golden buds off the wild tea bushes growing behind her family home. This Jin Jun Mei (Golden Eyebrows) is one of the most prized teas in China, making it a very rare commodity.

About Verdant Tea View company

Company description not available.

4 Tasting Notes

83
1048 tasting notes

Here we have another sample I held on to for some time. Prior to today, I seemed to always be looking for the right time to try it. This most certainly should not have been the day. The frequent changes in weather patterns here finally caused me to crash last night. I had a stressful week and ended up skimping on sleep for a couple days, so by Friday I was feeling pretty terrible. Saturday then rolled around, the weather stayed warm, and while talking to a friend, I just went down for the count. Nausea, coughing, uncontrollable shaking, intense pain, muscle spasms, sweating, chills, and a splitting headache all hit at once. I’ve been barely functional at best today and have already decided to skip work tomorrow. I’ll warn you all in advance: it will be a green tea and pajamas kind of day. Back on track, a day of coughing up phlegm seemed like it might require a tea with deep honey notes, so I ended up at last finding a suitable reason to break out this sample. The circumstances were far from ideal, however, as I had difficulty maintaining focus while I sessioned this and had to rely on a nose and palate that were not functioning at optimal levels. All of this goes to say that readers should take this review with a couple more grains of salt than usual.

I gongfued this tea. After the rinse, I steeped 5 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 190 F water for 5 seconds. I followed this infusion with 11 subsequent infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 8 seconds, 10 seconds, 15 seconds, 20 seconds, 30 seconds, 45 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, and 5 minutes. I did not even remotely follow Verdant’s gongfu guide for this tea. I can’t quite recall my rationale for why I chose the methodology I did, but I think it had something to do with a different leaf to water ratio. I will go ahead and admit that I did not find this approach to do this tea justice and will be assigning a numerical score with the deficiencies of the brewing method and my own personal unreliability at the time of the session in mind.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves gave off robust aromas of smoke, honey, and wood. After the rinse, the aromas of smoke, honey, and wood intensified and were joined by subtle impressions of vanilla bean and malt. The first infusion produced a similar bouquet that saw the aromas of vanilla bean and malt swell, as well as the emergence of baked bread. In the mouth, I picked up thin notes of wildflower honey, wood, smoke, malt, and vanilla bean before a nutty, bready finish. Subsequent infusions saw the tea grow smoother and thicker, offering more pronounced impressions of honey, vanilla bean, malt, and bread all around. At this point the nuttiness emerged more fully, taking on the character of roasted almonds. I also finally began to note the expected Wuyi minerality toward the finish. Later infusions saw the return of smoke and wood, as well as the increasing dominance of minerals. When I really forced myself to focus, I could still detect hints of honey, malt, and bread.

This was not a complex or long-lasting tea, but my impression of it may be warped due to conducting the review session while sick. I will say, however, that I appreciated it’s texture. I found it very soothing. I also liked the pronounced honey notes it offered during its brief peak. To be sure, I found this to be a nice tea, but I wish I would have held off on sampling it until I was better able to appreciate everything it had to offer.

Flavors: Almond, Bread, Honey, Malt, Mineral, Vanilla, Wood

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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89
91 tasting notes

I find this tea to be fascinating. I brought some home for our annual family New Year’s eve dinner, and the first impression is … wait for it….PETTING ZOO!! HA, yes it does smell a bit like a goat, not terribly funky though, more barnyard hay with some goat mixed in. Also, lots of wildflower honey, mineral. Palate is very similar to the nose, with a long sweet finish. The tea changes wonderfully through several steepings. It can see where it would not be for everyone, but I found it really interesting and well balanced.
And, yes, we now call it the petting zoo tea….

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79

For a key to my rating scale, check out my bio.

Delicious, savory black tea. Smooth and balanced with considerable complexity. Miso soup, cacao nibs, and melted butter. $71 USD / 100g.

Flavors: Butter, Cacao, Cream, Dates, Dried Fruit, Honey, Molasses, Pleasantly Sour, Rose, Smoke, Spicy, Umami, Wood

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 125 ML

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90
39 tasting notes

It’s like drinking honey, minus the sweetness. Very little astringency. Perfect any time of day. It’s the one I always give to people who either aren’t into tea or who say they don’t like it. An easy crowd-pleaser.

Flavors: Honey

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 3 g 6 OZ / 180 ML

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