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Yikes!! My tasting note is certainly going to pale in comparison to the two that preceded it!

I was feeling like something interesting and on the “heavier” side tonight, so chose to brew up this tea. I like lapsang souchong in moderation (and particularly with milk), but who knows what this one will be like (well, a couple people do. But not me!)

The aroma of this tea is like smoked meat. Beef jerky. Campfire. It’s quite strong, and to my untrained nose, smells much like any lapsang souchong.

The flavour, however, is where it differs from other lapsangs I’ve tried. The smoke is unbelievably smooth here, no astringency, no sharp bite at all. In fact, the tea finishes with a surprising sweetness! I used about 2 tsp of leaf for 8 oz. of water, and am surprised at how delicious this is! It definitely doesn’t require any additions, although I’m certain it would hold up to them.

Hopefully I can get in a few more infusions tomorrow!

ETA: Second infusion, a couple minutes. This is truly unlike any lapsang I’ve previously tried. The smoke is still heavy in the second infusion, but there’s this amazing sweetness to it, and I can really taste the black tea underneath it. I have to admit that although this is a neat experience, I really can’t see myself ever really selecting such a tea to drink just on a whim (or if I did, I’d be dosing it with sweetener and milk and these nuances would be lost).

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 45 sec
CHAroma

Oooh, one of my friends loves Lapsang. I’ll have to pick this up for him.

Kittenna

Unfortunately this is one of the ’David’s Reserve Sample’ teas that I got from the rewards program! :( There are a couple reward packages left, I think, so if you’ve been collecting points on the site you may be able to get one…?

Bonnie

It’s the smoked oolong instead of it being a smoked black tea that makes it so wonderful.

Kittenna

It’s a smoked oolong?!

Bonnie

pretty sure it is

Kittenna

Neat! I wouldn’t have known. Not that good at telling things apart yet, especially with the smokiness on top.

Cody

So, for the sake of classification, were the leaves fully oxidized? I mean, is it like the mi lan xiang black that Verdant offers where leaves that are typically used for one class of tea are processed as a different class? Or is this actually a heavily-oxidized oolong that had a further processing step of smoking?

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Comments

CHAroma

Oooh, one of my friends loves Lapsang. I’ll have to pick this up for him.

Kittenna

Unfortunately this is one of the ’David’s Reserve Sample’ teas that I got from the rewards program! :( There are a couple reward packages left, I think, so if you’ve been collecting points on the site you may be able to get one…?

Bonnie

It’s the smoked oolong instead of it being a smoked black tea that makes it so wonderful.

Kittenna

It’s a smoked oolong?!

Bonnie

pretty sure it is

Kittenna

Neat! I wouldn’t have known. Not that good at telling things apart yet, especially with the smokiness on top.

Cody

So, for the sake of classification, were the leaves fully oxidized? I mean, is it like the mi lan xiang black that Verdant offers where leaves that are typically used for one class of tea are processed as a different class? Or is this actually a heavily-oxidized oolong that had a further processing step of smoking?

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Bio

I have always been a tea fan (primarily herbals and Japanese greens/oolongs) but in the last year or so, tea has become increasingly more appealing as not only a delicious, calming drink, but as a relatively cheap, healthy reward or treat to give myself when I deserve something. I should clarify that, however; the reward is expanding my tea cupboard, not drinking tea – I place no restrictions on myself in terms of drinking anything from my cupboard as that would defeat my many goals!

My DavidsTea addiction was born in late 2011, despite having spent nearly a year intentionally avoiding their local mall location (but apparently it was just avoiding the inevitable!). I seem to have some desire to try every tea they’ve ever had, so much of my stash is from there, although I’ve recently branched out and ordered from numerous other companies.

I like to try and drink all my teas unaltered, as one of the main reasons I’m drinking tea other than for the flavour is to be healthy and increase my water intake without adding too many calories! I’ve found that the trick in this regard is to be very careful about steeping time, as most teas are quite pleasant to drink straight as long as they haven’t been oversteeped. However, I tend to be forgetful (particularly at work) when I don’t set a timer, resulting in a few horrors (The Earl’s Garden is not so pleasant after, say, 7+ minutes of steeping).

I’m currently trying to figure out which types of teas are my favourites. Herbals are no longer at the top; oolongs have thoroughly taken over that spot, with greens a reasonably close second. My preference is for straight versions of both, but I do love a good flavoured oolong (flavoured greens are really hit or miss for me). Herbals I do love iced/cold-brewed, but I drink few routinely (Mulberry Magic from DavidsTea being a notable exception). I’m learning to like straight black teas thanks to the chocolatey, malty, delicious Laoshan Black from Verdant Tea, and malty, caramelly flavoured blacks work for me, but I’m pretty picky about anything with astringency. Lately I’ve found red rooibos to be rather medicinal, which I dislike, but green rooibos and honeybush blends are tolerable. I haven’t explored pu’erh, mate, or guayasa a great deal (although I have a few options in my cupboard).

I’ve decided to institute a rating system so my ratings will be more consistent. Following the smiley/frowny faces Steepster gives us:

100: This tea is amazing and I will go out of my way to keep it in stock.

85-99: My core collection (or a tea that would be, if I was allowing myself to restock everything!) Teas I get cravings for, and drink often.

75-84: Good but not amazing; I might keep these in stock sparingly depending on current preferences.

67-74: Not bad, I’ll happily finish what I have but probably won’t ever buy it again as there’s likely something rated more highly that I prefer.

51-66: Drinkable and maybe has some aspect that I like, but not really worth picking up again.

34-50: Not for me, but I can see why others might like it. I’ll make it through the cup and maybe experiment with the rest to get rid of it.

0-33: It’s a struggle to get through the cup, if I do at all. I will not willingly consume this one again, and will attempt to get rid of the rest of the tea if I have any left.

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