This morning we travel to the Yunnan province of China for a cup of black tea called Yunnan Golden Snail. A careful plucking of the top leaves on the tea bush is handcrafted into beautiful curls. The leaf looks like the black tea version of Pi Lo Chun, a China green tea whose name translates to Green Snail Spring. You can read my review of that tea here.
I steeped the leaves in boiling point (212 degrees F) water for 4 minutes. Unlike the twisted, “spider leg” tea leaves from last week, these leaves fully unfurled during steeping in what’s called the “agony of the leaf”.
My teapot shows the tree in my neighbor’s backyard that still holds a lot of its golden leaf. I just love those colors against the brilliant blue late autumn sky!
Oh, just look at that gorgeous leaf! It imparts a light smoky aroma, reminiscent of cooked bacon. This smoky quality comes through in the flavor as well. It’s not the fireplace smoky of Lapsang Souchong nor is it the tobacco smoky of gunpowder tea. It’s definitely…bacon…mmmm…and to a confirmed vegetarian like myself, an interesting treat to taste that once again.
The russet liquor glows in my teapot as I pour my first cup. Notes of spice and raisin fill my mouth with a bright astringency in the finish that lingers very nicely. This tea tastes great plain but would definitely stand up to a dollop of milk, if desired.
I sit and gaze out the window, my cup warming my hands, and think of my coming trip to New Mexico. I leave in 2 days time to visit my son and his family, including my brand new grandson, Landon, who came into this world last Monday. My son now has his own son and the circle of life continues…
I won’t return from my trip until next Sunday evening so I’m sorry to say that there won’t be any Saturday Morning Tea post next week. However, I will look forward to sharing another cup of tea with you in 2 weeks time when I believe it will be time to review another Pi Lo Chun tea. What do you think? As always, if you ever have any requests for tea reviews or questions about tea, I am always happy to receive them.
Happy tea drinking, dear friends!
“Let us imagine care of the soul, then, as an application of poetics to everyday life.” ~Thomas Moore