Smokey Keemun


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Smokey Keemun

Postby Marlene » Oct 9th, '05, 15:58

WOW! I just made up a pot of keemun concerto from my most recent order and it almost doesn't qualify as the same tea from my last order! Very smokey!
I also ordered the tea sachets in the keemun conderto to take to work. These must have been from a previous batch, cuz the smoke just isn't there. It tastes like the keemun from my previous order.
Anyway, what's up with the smoke?
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Smoky Keemun

Postby Tom » Feb 19th, '06, 02:17

Hi Marlene,

Yes, I agree with you-- the 2005 crop of Keemun is like a different tea. It was a disappointment to me... not so much because of the smokiness, as I sometimes like a smoky overtone; but this crop has none of the wonderful almost floral fragrance that the past few crops had.

I hope that the future crops will show a resumption of the previous character.
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Postby EvenOdd » Mar 1st, '06, 04:09

I recently got the black sampler, and so far my favorite is the Keemun Concerto. I love the smokey flavor, and I'm dissapointed to find that it's a defect instead of a feature.

So far I have read that Lapsang is intentially smokey. If I really like the 2005 batch of Keemun Concerto, would I enjoy Lapsang?

Also, are there any other teas sold here that are also smokey in flavor? Please recommend some for me.
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Postby Schpenke » Mar 1st, '06, 10:30

EvenOdd wrote:I recently got the black sampler, and so far my favorite is the Keemun Concerto. I love the smokey flavor, and I'm dissapointed to find that it's a defect instead of a feature.

So far I have read that Lapsang is intentially smokey. If I really like the 2005 batch of Keemun Concerto, would I enjoy Lapsang?

Also, are there any other teas sold here that are also smokey in flavor? Please recommend some for me.


You will love the Lapsang Souchong if you enjoy a heavy smoke flavor. I always have a cup when I'm eating curry or any spicy food as it's a perfect compliment.

For a nice, smoky green tea try the Gunpowder Green as well.
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Postby EvenOdd » Mar 1st, '06, 12:27

So far I enjoy Gunpowder too. I'm not much for green tea, but it's really good.
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Postby EvenOdd » Mar 22nd, '06, 04:59

I noticed the Keemun Concerto is back in stock in full force. Is this year's crop the same as last years? If so, I will definitely buy a tin of it.
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Postby LavenderPekoe » Mar 22nd, '06, 09:34

I asked in the "chat with a live operator". Emily said it is from the same crop as what I had purchased for my father in January.
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Postby jogrebe » Mar 22nd, '06, 16:03

EvenOdd wrote:I recently got the black sampler, and so far my favorite is the Keemun Concerto. I love the smokey flavor, and I'm dissapointed to find that it's a defect instead of a feature.

So far I have read that Lapsang is intentially smokey. If I really like the 2005 batch of Keemun Concerto, would I enjoy Lapsang?

Also, are there any other teas sold here that are also smokey in flavor? Please recommend some for me.


Well if Lapsang is too smokey for you can can always cut it down a bit by mixing in a different type of black tea that is not smokey.
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Postby EvenOdd » Mar 22nd, '06, 17:36

I'll get the keemun in my next order. But that's a really good idea. I'll try mixing it with a black tea. Awesome.
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Postby Jim. » Apr 22nd, '06, 08:13

I just brewed up a cup of the concerto and it smelled awful. I dumped it out. My nose could not handle it.

Did I do something wrong? Should I try again?
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Postby jogrebe » Apr 22nd, '06, 11:43

Jim. wrote:I just brewed up a cup of the concerto and it smelled awful. I dumped it out. My nose could not handle it.

Did I do something wrong? Should I try again?


It its the smokey flavor and small, its the tea not you. So I'd recommend putting it off for a year or so until you've verified that the current crop is how it "should be" instead of smokey and then pick up a sample of that to try again.
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Postby Warden Andy » Apr 22nd, '06, 11:49

Try rinsing the leaves with hot water before brewing to see if that makes it smell/taste better.
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Postby Steve S. » Apr 24th, '06, 17:30

I finally resolved never to buy any more Keemun teas, as more than any other tea, they have tended to disappoint me and end up in the trash. And this is not just recent experience, but over several years.

Black teas from Fujian province can share some similarity to Keemuns and generally offer better quality and value.
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Postby Chip » Apr 26th, '06, 13:43

Keemuns vary so much, not only from year to year...but there are all different grades. I have several 2005 Keemuns, some better than others, but none as good as in years past, bad years happen to all tea produicing countries. Keemun tends to be strong...sometimes knock your socks off strong. My Keemun supplier will state if a tea is smokey. If it is , they have other keemuns to choose from. I don't care for smokey tea either. I still have several 2004 Keemun that have a nice sweet aroma and some with an amazing sublime chocolate aroma (they are unflavored!!!)

Steve, I would not give up on them yet...I know it can be frustrating. If you like a strong bracing cup of tea in the morning, nothing beats Keemuns. The 2005 Mao Fengs were better than the keemuns, but again there's variety there.

I used to get equally frustrated with Darjeeling. There are so many estates and grades. I want my Darjeeling full of fruity and/or flowery aroma and taste and not too astringent. I have not been disappointed lately.

But it took patience...a lot of patience till I figured it out. And asking for advice from my suppliers. If you never ask the right question, you won't get the answer you need in order to make an informed decision.
Keemun, I have to admit, I am still working on.

Try using a little less tea and make sure you brew it for 4-5min...or even a little longer. I use a scale, 2.25 grams (the exact weight of a new dime) for a 6oz. cup.
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