Prunes, sweet malt, hints of
Barbecued chicken, beef with
mushrooms, milk chocolate
Picked by hand
Bush Tiger, Rwanda
We still find Rwanda one of the world's most exciting tea regions, and here's a fine example from the country's top producer, Rukeri. Fans of Assam and fine Kenyan teas will love this rare orthodox example. Named in honour of Rwanda's indigenous Bush Tiger mantis, this tea really impresses us with its molasses-like sweetness, roasted nut and malt flavours, and its exotic woody notes.
The leaves for this smooth and balanced tea were harvested from the seemingly endless volcanic hills in the north of Rwanda. At altitudes between 1600 and 2000 metres, the balance of rainfall, heat, humidity and mineral-rich soils here is a haven for the bushes. The Rukeri Tea Factory was founded in 1978 by American tea trader Joe Wertheim. The Rwandan government had invited him to build a factory after they drained the Cyohoha and Rukeri mountain marshes for tea cultivation. The estate now oversees a 284 hectare tea garden and supports a cooperative that manages a further 930 hectares. Through buying tea from this co-op, Rukeri supports over 3500 smallholder farmers.
LEAF APPEARANCE:Black, wiry and well defined with visible tips
AROMA:Fresh and malty with roasted and exotic notes
TASTE:Smooth, rich and malty, with nut and camphor complexities
THE ART OF PREPARATION
BUSH TIGER BLACK TEA
This is our recommended brewing guide, but by all means adjust to your own taste.
- Warm your teapot and cups with boiling water.
- Discard the water and add two level teaspoons of tea to your pot.
- Add 250ml / 9oz water (i.e. one teacup or small mug) at 100°C / 212°F.
- Place the lid on the pot and steep for three-to-five minutes. Stir, then strain the tea into your cup.
- Serve with a splash of milk, if desired.