October 29, 2021 2 min read
Double Double Toil and Trouble. Fire Burn and (Tea) Cauldron Bubble
With Halloween approaching this weekend, and with apologies to Shakespeare and the famous line spoken by the three witches in Act IV scene 1 of Macbeth, I thought you would be interested in our own smokey cinnamon Souchong tea.
Lapsang Souchong is a black tea created completely by accident. It originates from the small village of Tongmu in the Wuyi Province of China. At the end of Ming Dynasty, circa 1644, the Qing army was passing through Tongmu. The villagers, fearing for their lives, fled the valley into the hills and in their haste to leave left their tea processing. When they returned, the leaves had oxidised turning from the normal green to a dark orange/ brown colour. Rushing to finish off the processing they lit fires and tried to save the crop.
Once processed the cup colour was red in colour and not the usual green. In addition, the firing method had also imparted a smokey note to the leaves.
Wanting to cut their losses they still sent the tea to the tea trading city of Xingcun. To their great surprise, the local tea merchants returned asking for more, and even better they achieved a premium price over the normal green tea they had been selling for many years. The village of Tongmu has been making smoked lapsang souchong teas ever since, and the nearby pine forests provide the wood for the fire that delivers the distinctive smokey note.
Our Souchong Serendipity is made in southern Sri Lanka and as Sri Lanka produces 99% of the world’s true cinnamon, most of which is grown in the south, we can benefit from the richness and sweetness of cinnamon to produce Souchong Serendipity. The black tea is smoked over cinnamon wood which gives the tea its subtle sweetness and makes a perfect addition to any bonfire night event.