The Pleasures of Imperial Golden Monkey Tea
I may be biased but I think all teas are special. That so many different taste experiences are created from two subspecies of one plant is pretty amazing. And one of these truly amazing teas is Imperial Golden Monkey. It’s a spring harvest black tea that gets its name from the wiry golden and black leaves that resemble monkey claws.
A Little Imperial Golden Monkey Tea History:
Introduced in the 1700’s, Imperial Golden Monkey is a relative newcomer to the tea scene, which stretches back over 5000 years. However, Imperial Golden Monkey is an upstart that has gained a legion of fans and serious respect. Originally Imperial Golden Monkey was so expensive, it was only consumed by local landlords and merchants.
What makes Imperial Golden Monkey tea so special?
Imperial Golden Monkey tea is grown at high elevations, between 500 and 1000 metres, in China’s Yunnan and Fujian provinces. It’s an out-of-the-way region shrouded in clouds and mist. The leaves are plucked every spring as one bud and one leaf, whereas other traditional tea plucks usually comprise one bud and two or three leaves. Imperial Golden Monkey is also usually hand-processed, which is rare and time consuming.
How does Imperial Golden Monkey tea taste?
Imperial Golden Monkey tea has a sweeter flavour, less astringency and lower tannin content than most black teas. This gives the tea a slight cocoa taste and aroma component. Other tasting notes for Imperial Golden Monkey include malt and a hit of peachy fruitiness to round out the flavour profile. Imperial Golden Monkey is one of those teas that’s best appreciated on its own with no milk or sweetener, so you can thoroughly enjoy its complex yet delicate nature.
To enjoy Imperial Golden Monkey tea:
Steep one teaspoon of tea at 95˚C or 200˚F for 3 – 5 minutes.
Imperial Golden Monkey has on average 45 mg of caffeine per cup