Jin Jun Mei black tea is a famous black tea from the Wu Yi Mountains in Fujian Province in eastern China. It typifies how a traditional tea master can transform well-tended, high-quality modern leaf into an elegant, deeply-flavored finished tea that quickly attains world-class status.
Slender and with a slight twist, this medium-sized, bud-only pluck is perfect for yielding a delicious black tea. The careful withering, hand-rolling, and firing of this leaf brings out the wonderful flavors that the terroir of the mountains of eastern China have for the tea bushes that thrive there. Being a bud-only pluck (similar to several premium white and green teas, it requires 50,000 buds to manufacture 500 grams (slightly more than 1 lb). 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.
The smell and taste of black tea and strip style ooloongs from the eastern provinces of China are unique, distinct, and particular to this historic tea region of China. Jin Jun Mei is made in several places in this part of China, but the terroir of the remote, protected mountainsides of the Wu Yi Mountains provides the depth of flavor in its dark oolongs and black teas that we love. Here, the tea bush cultivars used to manufacture many fine back and oolong tea are readily adaptable to making a new, modern-style sweet hong cha.
We are extremely excited to have ‘the real McCoy’ from a trusted source, for a very fair price. Yes this tea is more expensive than some other black teas, but it should be – there is very little of it and it is wonderfully full of concentrated flavor. There are numerous oolongs, white and green teas that cost much more than this; we in the West are just not as familiar with expensive black teas.
This tea is so excellent and revered by tea enthusiasts in China such that even in China there are copycat teas being made in this style. We have seen tea that goes by this name (or by a similar description) selling in urban areas of China and the U.S. for upwards of $300.00 per lb. There is a hot market in China for fashionable new teas and Jin Jun Mei is an example of that.
Here at Tea Trekker we think that this tea is arguably one of the best values in our whole catalogue of teas right now. Supply is usually limited, so if you are intrigued don’t wait too long to try this spectacular tea, and its cousin…the wild-grown version.