On to the tasting of my second tea sample that the good folks at Teavivre sent me! I got a premium keemun to try from them, and I happened to have a similarly-priced keemun from Adagio to compare it to. Keemun is a rich, smooth black tea from the Anhui province in China.
I don’t usually drink much black teas, but a good keemun is a treat. Needless to say, I was eager to taste and compare these two! Let’s get started, shall we?
Adagio’s Keemun Concerto – $12/3 oz.
Adagio’s Keemun Concerto looks impressive straight out the of the bag. The long, twisted strands have a lovely leaf-to-tip ratio (look at how pretty those golden tips look in the left picture!) and a nice, rich aroma. I steeped this tea at just under boiling temperature for 3 minutes. The result was a balanced, mellow cup. It’s a little bit flinty and earth, with almost a fruity aroma to it. It has a medium body with a clean finish- you don’t get that yucky, harsh tannin afterfeel in your mouth like you do with a lot of lower quality or oversteeped black teas. I don’t know if it’s supposed to have cocoa notes to it, but I definitely tasted some, which was a pleasant surprise. I was really delighted with its quality for the price!
Rating: 5/5 stars
Teavivre’s Premium Keemun Hao Ya– $15.90/3.5 oz
Out of the bag, the Premium Keemun Hao Ya tea has an aroma that’s both malty and flowery- very pleasant! The leaves, however, look like a lower quality than the word “premium” would suggest. There are few tips to be seen, and the leaves are in smaller pieces and more broken up. This is a sign that the leaves were processed with a bit less care than a tea with longer twists of leaves.
Brewed up (to be consistent, I also brewed Teavivre’s keemun for 3 minutes with just under boiling water), the tea has an amber-red color, very similar to the color of Adagio’s keemun. The resulting aroma was flowery and malty. Taste-wise, I was disappointed. It has a sort of flat flavor, the maltiness of it feeling a bit one-note. It reminded me of an English breakfast tea, and not in a good way. There was a dry aftertaste that was a little unpleasant. Overall, Teavivre’s keemun turned out to be rather disappointing, especially compared to Adagio’s keemun that is similarly-priced and much higher in quality.
Rating: 2/5 stars
Well, I was disappointed with Teavivre’s keemun offering, but I still have three other teas to try from them, and I’m eager to give them a taste! Stay tuned.