Updated: May 11, 2021
JIN KONG QUE
translation: Golden Peacock
Origin: Yunnan, China
Harvest: April 2019
Steeping Suggestion: 212° for 2-3 minutes
Jin Kong Que, or Golden Peacock, is a black tea grown in the Yunnan province of China. Yunnan is divided into two tea regions: the Xinan Tea Region which occupies the northern part of the province and the Huanan Tea Region in the southern part. The Xinan Tea Region is the southwestern part of China and it has some of the most rich tea history. The region is believed to be where the tea tree originated; some of the oldest wild tea trees found in this region date back hundreds to thousands of years. The Huanan Tea Region is characterized by a warm and wet climate which is the most suitable out of all the Chinese tea regions for tea growing.
Jin Kong Que is so stunning to look at; the leaves are ablaze with a bright gold hue that gives the leaves the impression of being on fire. The dried leaves boast an aroma of caramel chocolates drizzled with honey and the taste is bold but ends in a sweetness.
Golden Peacock by MASTERS by Adagio Teas is a golden yellow or burned orange hue. The color is very lively and vibrant, stimulating your sense of sight before scent and sip. I enjoy watching teas steep and discovering their color intensity. Golden Peacock becomes a dark liquor quite quickly as the steeping instructions call for only 2 to 3 minutes of steeping time.
Being that Golden Peacock is a black tea, it makes sense that its hue is intense, however, it does surprise me at how potent the color becomes within the short steep time. The liquor is visually grounding, sort of like a fall harvested tea, even though Golden Peacock was harvested in April 2019. I also appreciated the visual appeal of the dried golden leaves.
Caramel chocolates drizzled with honey; fresh; potent
Subdued caramel chocolates dizzled with honey
Jin Kong Que has a heavy bitterness that is immediately noticeable. The tea's heaviness comparable to the same mouth feel as coffee. Cocoa notes follow the bitterness and ends in a sweet yam or sweet potato note.
Jin Kong Que with Honey:
With 2 teaspoons of honey, Jin Kong Que by MASTERS by Adagio Teas is reduced by about 10% of bitterness. The chocolate notes take a back seat and make way for a vegetal/yam note changing the tea from a dessert-like to a savory experience.
SIDE NOTE: It is common for me to prefer specialty teas without honey because they usually boast notes that are neither accentuated nor ameliorated by the sugars in honey. Jin Kong Que is such a multi-note tea that I feel as though honey only confuses the sip and detracts from the overall sipping experience. When I sip Jin Kong Que in the future, I will most likely not add honey.
Learn more about Tai Ping Hou Kui
Xinan Tea Region, pg. 74
Huanan Tea Region, pg. 76
"Black Tea-Steep #1 Yunnan Golden Buds Black Tea with Celadon Porcelain Teapot" by ESGREEN