- Jin Jun Mei Background
- Jin Jun Mei Preparation
Jin Jun Mei, a first flush China black tea, is one of the most sought after black teas in China. It is produced using a newly redeveloped cultivar deep in the mountains of Wuyi, Fujian, in the much renowned black tea origin, Xingcun. It has only recently been popularly available outside of the exclusive circle of the rich and powerful in China. We were fortunate enough to acquire this incredible tea from the esteemed tea master Leo Kwan of Tea Hong.
Jin Jun Mei has a warm, floral aroma with a sweet date overtone and a slight hint of vanilla. An elegant, full body echos the aroma. The cup is rich, complex and sweet with mouth-watering after effects especially on the sides of the tongue and back of the palate as a continuation of the sweet aftertaste
Ingredients: Artisan black tea
Origin: Nanping, Fujian, China
At first glance Jin Jun Mei might look like a finer version of golden tippy Yunnan black tea, but it actually has a much more sophisticated taste and aroma profile in the grand Fujian black tea tradition. Slender and with a slight twist Jin Jun Mei is made up of buds only. Similar to several premium white and green teas it requires 50,000 buds to manufacture 500 grams (slightly more than 1 lb.) of this incredible tea. An experienced tea plucker can harvest about 2,000 buds a day, so to make about a pound of this tea requires the full day’s work of 20 pluckers. This is one reason why bud-only teas must be more expensive than other teas.
Since 1998, tea master Leo Kwan has pushed the boundaries of the tea industry beyond traditional buying and selling to provide consultation and specialist training for tea house operators, hoteliers, celebrity chefs (some in Michelin starred restaurants) and tea importers, from Hong Kong to Japan, Switzerland, France, and UK. He has always worked directly with tea producers to obtain the best quality tea at the best price. Most of these producers have been generations of tea planters, processors or fresh leaf gatherers who work in ancient methods deep in the mountains of pristine natural environments--some in virgin forests. Over the years Master Kwan has established a strong and intimate bond with these producers which is why he has exclusive products of exceptional quality rarely found in tea shops. Master Kwan has a deep understanding of every phase of tea production and processing and is passionate in advocating the use of finer teas. Master Kwan is author of the much referenced tea guide and commentary site: TeaGuardian.com
Our Jin Jun Mei Gold Stallion is an adaptable black tea for infusing either conventionally or using the gongfu approach however, the distinction of this tea reveals itself best when using a higher leaf to water ratio and shorter infusion times. Follow proper procedures for whichever method you prefer and you will not be disappointed
Water Temperature: boiling
Water Quality: Best with Spring Water
Amount of Leaf (per 6 fl oz water): 2 Tbl. (4-5 grams)
Steep Time: 30 seconds to 5 minutes
Number of Infusions: 3-4 depending upon your method of brewing
Our Jin Jun Mei Gold Stallion can be brewed using either the standard western or the Chinese gongfu method. When using the western method we highly recommend brewing your tea in a teapot or mug with a removable infuser so that you can remove the leaves at the end of the steeping time. Whole leaf teas of this quality need room to unfurl and expand in the water in order to perform their "magic." However, leaving the tea leaves in the water will result in an over-infused, bitter tea. If you want a stronger cup of tea increase the amount of leaf rather than the steeping time. If you don't have a removable infuser, you can brew the loose leaves directly in the pot. At the end of the steeping time, pour all of the tea into a warm serving pitcher or pot.
When using the traditional Chinese gongfu method increase the leaf to water ratio to 2 grams per 100 mil. water. The first infusion will be for about 30 seconds, increasing the time for each subsequent infusion. In this manner you will get approximately four infusions.