A Special Flight of Black Teas Just For You
Hello friends, We’re excited to source this selection of unique black teas for your enjoyment. The Black Teas in this trio represent some of the high-quality leaves we have the privilege of sampling, with stories or flavor profiles that are a little “off the beaten path.” While supplies last, pick up from us in-store or order online here.
- Hong Yu – Sun Moon Lake Region, Taiwan – 1 oz
- Alma de Misiones – Misiones Province, Argentina – 2 oz
- Organic Benifuuki – Haraizumi, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan – 2 oz
Hong Yu black tea creates a rich, smooth brew with slight notes of squash blossom and cinnamon. Elegant and restrained, this tea has virtually no bitterness. The beautiful amber variation of the tea leaf color comes into view when hot water is poured over these large, wiry leaves. Hong Yu cultivar, also known as “Red Jade,” is grown in the Sun Moon Lake region of central Taiwan and was designated cultivar #18 by the Taiwan Research and Extension Station. The cultivar was developed in 1999 by crossing a Burmese assamica tea plant variety with a local Taiwanese wild mountain variety. The Burmese assamica variety was first introduced to Taiwan in 1920 under Japanese rule, as Japan sought to establish black tea production to suit European tastes. The wild mountain variety that comprises the other half of Hong Yu’s heritage was consumed by Taiwan’s indigenous peoples and later described by the Dutch in 1645 and the Qing Dynasty court in 1717.
The Alma de Misiones is a lovely hand-plucked black tea produced from previously abandoned tea bushes in the iron-rich Misiones Province of Argentina. This tea is earthy and carries notes of brown sugar, leather and cherries. The mouthfeel is overall smooth with some tannin at the back of the palate. Camellia sinensis originally came to Argentina in 1923 when a Ukrainian priest named Tijón Hnatiuk brought a gift of tea seeds to his family members in the recently formed Ukrainian settlement of Tres Capones. The good folks at Pei Chen Tea Palace in Buenos Aires have been working with tea growers in Misiones to foment traditional tea growing and processing methods, with improvements to tea growers’ harvests every year. This tea was produced at Alma Annette tea garden, where trainings to other community members take place. Alma Annette also has an ongoing project of interspersing trees that are native to the Misiones region into their tea garden.
The Organic Black Benifuuki brews a striking red hue, with pumpkin and umami notes and a thick natural, mellow sweetness. This prize-winning black tea from Shizuoka prefecture in Japan is unique – Japan doesnot produce a large amount of black tea. This cultivar, Benifuuki, was produced combining Benihomare – the first tea cultivar ever officially registered in Japan, in 1953, – with Indian Darjeeling tea plants. The cultivar is now being studied for its high content of 0-Methylated Catechins to alleviate allergy symptoms.