The origins of our Keemun Chinese black tea
Bold and luxurious, our single origin Keemun loose-leaf black tea from China has a fruity aroma and complex characters with an alluring, slightly smoky hint. Robust in flavour, it tastes of honey and oak, with a smooth mouthfeel that makes it a luxurious alternative to a regular breakfast tea.
With its strong, black wiry leaves and light amber infusion, this single-origin summer flush is a premium, special high-grade version of Keemun black tea that brings deliciously refined luxury to the daily ritual of tea making. The wonderful aroma of this exceptional Chinese loose-leaf black tea is enhanced by adding a splash of milk, which brings out its extraordinary, soft floral notes. Although perfect as a breakfast brew, this refreshing tea can be enjoyed at any time of day.
Requiring great skill to produce, Keemun is the most famous Chinese black tea, known in China as 'Qimen', Keemun is made from the Chinese variety of the tea plant, Camellia Sinensis. Its name stems from its place of origin, Qimen County in China's Anhui province, located between the Yellow Mountains and the Yangtze River. Keemun tea undergoes an unusually slow process of withering and oxidation during production, which creates the nuanced characters and non-astringent flavour that has won it generations of fans as a great breakfast tea.
Keemun was first produced in the late 1800s. At the time, China was primarily exporting green teas, and Keemun's invention was an attempt to compete with the black teas produced in India. Keemun tea quickly became popular in the West and is used as one of the key components of English breakfast tea blends, partly for its flavour and partly for its high caffeine content.
Like all black teas, this smoky Chinese Keemun tea comes with all the benefits of being packed with polyphenols, the antioxidant plant compounds that have been linked to everything from lowering cholesterol and the risk of heart disease to helping improve gut health. If you want to make it a vegan tea, simply serve it black.
Alternatives to this smoky loose leaf tea
For more full-flavoured breakfast brews, try our Margaret's Hope Darjeeling or Ahinsa organic, Lover's Leap or Luxury Pekoe, all of which are excellent Ceylon black teas. For something a little different, also from China, look to Dian Hong – another complex tea with a delicate balance of cocoa and floral notes.
There's more to morning tea than a classic English breakfast or Earl Grey. For the full range of varieties to start your day, check out the range of Breakfast Teas available in our Tea Shop.