Good morning, dear tea friends! Change is in the air. The winds have shifted, welcoming in September with dry, cool air. As I sit and sip my tea, I watch the summer curtains dance and flutter around my windows.
I’ve chosen a dark, rich tea this morning, a China black tea called Keemun Xiang Luo, which translates to “fragrant snail”. The leaves are rolled and curled during processing, similar to the green tea called Pi Lo Chun, to resemble spiral snail shapes.
I steeped the dark, glossy leaf for 5 minutes in boiling point (212F) water.
Keemun tea is named after a county, Qimen, in Anhui province. There are several stories about its origins but the most common is one of a governmental official in the late 1800s who learned about black tea production in Fujian province and then decided to return to his native county, Qimen, to produce black tea there. He met with success and his new black tea was imported to England where it was enjoyed as a breakfast tea.
As you can see, some of the leaf opened their accordion pleats during steeping and some stayed rolled. I detected a maltiness in the aroma as the leaves steeped, which dissipated after the tea cooled to reveal a hint of red wine and a toasty note.
The tea liquor gleams like dark honey in my glass teapot. The flavor is thick and rich with notes of dark cocoa, which linger in my mouth.
This would be a great tea to take along to an outside fall activity, like a long walk through the woods or a football game. It’s very warming.
I’d like to wish my very dear Mom a happy birthday today. Happy Birthday, Mom!
Have a wonderful week and enjoy your tea!
“And the beauty of a woman, with passing years only grows!”