Kumaon Black Tea - Organic

Picture of Kumaon Black Tea
Brand:Frontier
Style:Black Tea
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Region:Kumaon, India
Loose/teabag:Loose
Product page:Kumaon Black Tea

This tea's info last updated: Mar. 14, 2021

Commercial Description

Our robust and sweet Kumaon black tea comes from one of India’s oldest Himalayan tea gardens in a revitalized tea region along India's western Nepali border. The abundance of golden tips carry a glowing caramel sweetness under thick cocoa flavors.

Ratings & Reviews

Page 1 of 1 page with 2 reviews

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Reviewer pic79 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
(1431 reviews) on

I've been curious about teas from the Kumaon region of India for some time, but had yet to get my hands on one until now. What a surprise when the local food co-op got this in stock in their display of Frontier's bulk teas and spices!

The leaf is very fine, and strongly aromatic. The still-rather-intact leaf is tiny, and looks to be made from a small-leaf cultivar, smaller even than most Darjeelings. The smell is spicy and floral, almost a little perfumey, reminiscent almost of potpourri.

The brewed cup is also strongly aromatic, and also dark, with a thick body and rich flavor. The aroma is multifaceted and not subtle: it's very spicy, and has notes of cedar or juniper wood, also strongy floral and fruity notes. The aroma is also oddly reminiscent of raw Pu-erh. The flavor is strongly savory, and also very sweet, almost unsettlingly so, as if I had added honey. There is not much bitterness. The finish, however, is quite astringent.

As for how I felt after drinking this, it seems highly caffeinated, almost overly so. It seems to combine some of the qualities I dislike about Darjeeling tea (the jitteriness I feel after drinking it) with some of those I dislike about raw Pu-erh (its harshness on the palate.)

I also found this tea easy to brew too strongly; the leaf stretches VERY far, and if you just glance at it and throw in what looks like a normal amount, it'll come out a lot stronger than a typical tea. The potent aroma and high caffeine content also make this tea one that can get a bit overwhelming. So I'd warn you to go gentle on it.

It resteeps exceptionally well though. I was surprised to find the floral notes to be stronger in the second steep. I wish there were a way to enjoy this tea's aromatic complexity without some of its more objectionable qualities. This tea might work better with gong-fu-style brewing than most Indian teas. It has some characteristics of Pu-erh and other Chinese teas that work well with that brewing style.

In the end? This tea was interesting to try, but it wasn't among my favorites. I wasn't crazy about how I felt so wired after drinking it, and the aromatic notes, although interesting, were a bit muddled and didn't necessarily blend well. And the price of $50 a pound is one where, for that price, there are a lot of cheaper teas that I would prefer to this one.

I'd recommend picking this one up and giving it a try, in a small quantity, if you have the opportunity. But it's not my cup of tea.
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Link Link to This Review
Reviewer pic86 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
(55 reviews) on

This tea is definitely very unique but super tasty. It kind of tastes like dried fruit and it’s a little spicy but not super harsh or anything. If you’re looking for an interesting yet tasty tea that’s different from your average breakfast tea, try this!
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Page 1 of 1 page with 2 reviews

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