Hey-ho, we’re embarking on a new batch of teas! I ordered these a while back, because we were getting low on breakfast tea, but I decided to make a rule that all the old flavoured stuff had to be used up first before we could start on the new stuff. This is because a couple of them were a bit meh, and I just know it would have lingered in the cupboard forever and been forgotten otherwise. So, them’s the rules. It’s been tough. I’ve been quite excited about trying this one.
This is a honey flavoured Keemun. I don’t recall if I’ve ever had a honey flavoured tea before other than honey and vanilla chamomiles (which are entirely different beasts), so I had little to nothing to go on. I do very much like honey, though, and preferably the stronger flavoured once. We tend to buy heather honey, because it’s the strongest one available, with the added advantage of being rather on the runny side so a little goes a long way and it really seeps into the bread in a delicious way.
But anyway, I’m not here to review honey.
When making this tea, it certainly smells like honey. The whole kitchen smelled of honey while this was steeping. It was very distinctive. Sniffing the cup more ‘up close’ though, it didn’t actually smell that honey-y, but rather more floral. I wasn’t aware that it was a Keemun base at the time, but I felt like there was something else in there that I could quite put my finger on. A bit woody, I wanted to say. Maybe slightly malty. Finding out about the Keemun afterwards surprised me not even a little bit. It was rather more of an ‘oh, of course’ sort of moment.
Flavourwise, it’s quite pleasant. The honey is subtle but present. It doesn’t so much taste like a tea flavoured with honey as it does a tea with a little honey added to the cup, only without sweetening it. The base does taste somewhat generic, but it’s got a good strength to it so it feels like a robust cup of tea. Which, in my opinion, a Keemun always should. I’m forever puzzled when Keemun black is described as ‘mild’. A Keemun black should absolutely be able to stand up for itself, kick bottom and take names. I think it’s the honey flavouring that makes it feel a little generic, though. I feel like there might be a pretty good Keemun at the base of this.
So yes, pretty good. On the other hand, I suspect I could probably reproduce a similar cup by adding a small amount of strong honey to a suitable black tea myself. Don’t much like sweetened tea, though, so this probably is the better choice for me.