Hello again, my dear tea friends! This morning’s tea is a very special treat, in fact, I was only able to obtain 2 1/2 grams of it because so little was produced. I’ve mentioned the ancient tea forests in China’s Yunnan province before. This tea was produced from ancient tea trees located in the Wuyi Mountain Eco-Reserve. The Wuyi mountain range runs along the northern border of Fujian province in China. The mountain range acts as a barrier to the cold air coming in from the northwest. Warm moist air coming in from the sea creates a climate with high humidity and rainfall so the area is enveloped in fog most of the time. It’s an ideal climate for growing tea.
So, without any further ado, I introduce you to Pre-Chingming Ancient Forest Bohea tea.
This tea was harvested before the festival of Qingming (Chingming), usually celebrated on the 15th day from the Spring Equinox. Any teas harvested before that date are referred to as Pre-Chingming teas. In other words, harvested in very early spring. I reviewed a Pre-Chingming green tea about a month ago here. This Bohea tea is a black tea.
I steeped the leaves for 5 minutes in boiling point (212F) water.
The whole leaves after steeping have an interesting aroma of wet stones. I’ve read that this is because of the high mineral content of the soil in which the tea trees grow in. It is referred to as “Yan”, or rock, flavor. I know that doesn’t sound too appealing but it is a very fresh, slightly green, almost toasty quality which I find quite appealing.
The deep amber tea liquor is velvety smooth and quite complex with notes of rock and earth, a rich sweetness, a whisper of vegetal and a hint of cinnamon which lingers into the finish.
This is a tea unlike any tea I’ve had before.
I know it’s quite an expensive selection but I encourage anyone who is curious to try a sample of this very special black tea. I liken it to having the opportunity to try a very rare wine vintage but, in this case, you don’t have to buy the whole bottle. 😉
Have a wonderful week and enjoy your tea!
“Ritual is the way we carry the presence of the sacred. Ritual is the spark that must not go out.” ~Christina Baldwin, Writer