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Lapsang Souchong

Tea type
Black Tea
Ingredients
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Flavors
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Caffeine
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Edit tea info Last updated by Jason
Average preparation
Boiling 5 min, 15 sec

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43 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Backlogging from the weekend in Louisiana. This tea has officially become a required vacation staple. Uncontrollable brewing parameters? Pshaw! This tea is forgiving enough to take it! Bad...” Read full tasting note
    86
    aug3zimm 911 tasting notes
  • “Not Unlike Ricky (in his review of this tea) I was feeling a little experimental today. First I must say I was born and raised here in Texas. Home of the best BBQ in the whole WORLD (okay I know...” Read full tasting note
    61
    AngieL 111 tasting notes
  • “Thanks to *Auggy* who sent me the most gorgeously packaged teas ever, I am now sipping this tea. What a magnificent Lapsang! This tea exemplifies all the reasons I love the Lapsang Souchong in...” Read full tasting note
    92
    Doulton 255 tasting notes
  • “How about a backlog? The good thing about backlog notes is I can make a post even when I'm not actually having any tea. (No specific reason, just drinking something else at the moment) The bad...” Read full tasting note
    92
    Angrboda 1192 tasting notes

From Golden Moon Tea

Our Lapsang Souchong begins with bold black leaves, which are smoked over pine embers in Eastern China, making this loose leaf tea rich and full-bodied with a deep, bronze liquor. Both aromatic and distinctive, our Lapsang has grand character.

About Golden Moon Tea View company

Golden Moon is dedicated to offering outstanding, whole-leaf teas of the greatest quality and finesse. All Golden Moon Teas are hand-plucked and meticulously crafted to enhance leaf character, aroma, color, clarity, body, complexity, and above all, flavor.

43 Tasting Notes

86
911 tasting notes

Backlogging from the weekend in Louisiana.
This tea has officially become a required vacation staple. Uncontrollable brewing parameters? Pshaw! This tea is forgiving enough to take it! Bad tasting water? No problem! This is strong enough to cover it up and still taste delightful. This tea is a hero in my book. ♥

gmathis

Don’t care for it, but I can see L/S covering up the nastiest hotel coffee-pot water! Good call for travel.

Nicole Martin

This is one of my absolute favorites too. the aroma clears a room in my house though, my family can’t stand it :p

Auggy

gmathis, Well, I used tap water but it was still pretty nasty tasting water. This did cover it up nicely though!
HorseNcl, This is one of my favorite smokies, too. Fortunately I’m starting to change the husband’s mind about smoky teas so he doesn’t make brisket comments near as often now. He had the second steep of this one (nasty hotel water and all) and didn’t even ask for sugar! :)

Cinoi

I love this tea because it is so forgiving with you temperature and brewing.

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61
111 tasting notes

Not Unlike Ricky (in his review of this tea) I was feeling a little experimental today. First I must say I was born and raised here in Texas. Home of the best BBQ in the whole WORLD (okay I know that’s debatable) but this is my review so WE DO HAVE THE BEST BBQ IN THE WHOLE WORLD!

Anyway more important than BBQ on to the tea, I opened the package and was hit in the nose by smoke STRONG smoke (again I know smoke) and I thought Wow Angie, this is either going to go really good or really bad and I hoping for really good.

I finally take a sip and before My mouth hits the cup I smell strong smoke again. I was surprised the taste isn’t bad. I would compare it to liquid smoke but not in a bad way because if someone told me this tea is good it tastes like liquid smoke I’d go okay I’ll think I’ll have some oolong instead please. :) It is more liquid smokeseque not true hard core, intense liquid smoke but just a hint.

It’s a nice tea I wish I would have tried this in the winter when I probably would have enjoyed it more but hey I can always place an order in winter. It’s not a bad tea not an everyday thing but it’s actually kinda good.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Jim Marks

Lapsang is smoked over pine wood, not hardwood, which is what is used for barbecue, charcoal and liquid smoke. That’s why the smoke is similar, but different.

If you want to try a lapsang that is very mild (but probably still best in the colder weather) try “black dragon” from Upton Teas.

SoccerMom

Thanks for the recommendation Jim!

Jim Marks

As an aside, I might be willing to concede that Texas has the best beef-barbecue, but, and this might just be my East coast roots, I have to say that I find pork barbecue superior to beef. But then, I’m living in Houston, and I suspect that the barbecue here is horrible compared to “real Texas”.

SoccerMom

Try Salt Lick in Driftwood, Texas (near Austin) if you wanna know about “real BBQ” and then well talk BBQ. I don’t promise many things but I promise you’ll like their BBQ! BTW as this cup cooled I picked up on the pine that you had previously mentioned.

__Morgana__

Awww, no…. Goode & Co is awesome! ;-)

Jim Marks

The only trouble with traveling for barbecue is that my wife is a veggie. But we may stop in en route to Austin the next time we go (we went recently, but it was Lent).

Jim Marks

Goode… is that the one with the Emerson, Lake & Palmer armadillo out front?

SoccerMom

Morgana-I don’t care for Goode & Co have you tried Salt Lick before?

__Morgana__

Really? I loved Goode. Never been to salt lick.

mpierce87

I agree, the Salt Lick has the best BBQ in the world possibly.

SoccerMom

Morgana and Jim take it from me and mrawlins2 try Salt Lick! :)
@Morgana my husband likes Goode & Co but he even says that Salt Lick is the best BBQ in the whole world and he’s an engineer (it’s not easy to get him to say things like that) LOL.

__Morgana__

Next time I’m in Texas (whenever that will be) I will, if I’m anywhere near Austin!

Jim Marks

Apparently I just dated myself with that EL&P reference. O well.

__Morgana__

No, I got it. I just don’t remember the Armadillo. Lol.

Ewa

I’ve heard some pretty good things about Salt Lick, it’s true. As far as good barbecue in Houston though, there’s Swinging Door ( http://www.swingingdoor.com/ ) It’s in Richmond, which isn’t THAT easily accessible, but it’s quite good.

__Morgana__

Har! Armoredillo!

Jim Marks

I live on the southwest side, so that actually works for me.

Erin

As a Jersey girl who has recently moved to Texas, I attract quite a few odd looks when people find out I’m vegetarian. Oh well!

Jim Marks

Try Houston. My wife’s a veggie and its no problem, here.

__Morgana__

Is the Hobbit Hole still around? I used to love that sandwich shop for great veggie sandwiches.

Jim Marks

The Hobbit Cafe is still just off Kirby on West Alabama, yes.

SoccerMom

Erin, Everytime that I see a post that says you are in Burleson I wonder about Liz from the MTV show “My life as Liz”.
P.S. I have a teenager that’s how I even know about this show. :)

AmazonV

BBQ for Northeast coasters = Dinosaur BBQ i <3 them! never had texas bbq to compare though

I ♥ NewYorkCiTEA

I heart SC BBQ – pulled pork with mustard-based sauce! But will eat any good BBQ and would love eat BBQ in TX sometime.

SoccerMom

@chrine, I wouldn’t mind trying some SC BBQ. :)

I ♥ NewYorkCiTEA

Now I’ve been wanting BBQ for dinner all day! Thanks guys! =)

Jim Marks

I am eating pulled pork I made myself, right now. I couldn’t eat it during all of Lent and it has been calling me since practically January. Now, it doesn’t stand a chance.

I ♥ NewYorkCiTEA

Jim ~ Do you give up meat for all of Lent? We only do it on Fridays and Ash Wednesday. But we usually give up sweets for all of Lent.

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92
255 tasting notes

Thanks to Auggy who sent me the most gorgeously packaged teas ever, I am now sipping this tea. What a magnificent Lapsang! This tea exemplifies all the reasons I love the Lapsang Souchong in particular and smoky teas in general. I am not surprised by the wide range of ratings.

Certainly the aroma is absolutely indicative of a smoky tea. The aroma and the taste got me to thinking of Russian literature. I know that this is not labelled a caravan—but I thought of Boris Pasternak. One of the first literary controversies I was aware of was his Nobel Prize, gratefully accepted and then rejected, probably because of pressure from the Soviets. So I started reading his poetry and then I read his sweeping epic, “Dr. Zhivago” (the book is better than the film, which I haven’t seen for 40 something years).

This tea tastes like Yuri and Lara huddled up in a small cottage with the fire aflame. As Yuri Zhivago ventriloquizes Boris Pasternak, he reflects on winter:

“It snowed and snowed ,the whole world over,
Snow swept the world from end to end.
A candle burned on the table;
A candle burned.”

This tea reminds me of the insistent beat and flame and flare and flicker of the candle burning on the table as the fire roars in the fireplace and the Samovar boils away.

Golden Moon has at this point my vote for Best. Lapsang. Souchong. Ever. I know I’ll drink more—for me the land o’ Lapsang is largely an undiscovered and yet to be mapped country—but I’m placing an order.

I know that this review is more evocative than specific but for what do we live but to be evoked into sensations, emotions, nostalgias, memories and tea, like poetry and music, is a wonderful vehicle. This Golden Moon Lapsang Souchong (spasibo, Auggy), has taken me back to late 19th and early 20th century Russia.

SoccerMom

Okay I have not had a Lapsang Souchong so I’m wondering do you typically use milk and sugar? I got in my Golden Moon Sampler today and would like to try the Lapsang Souchong but need to be properly prepared. :)

__Morgana__

I’d try it first without additives. It’s a pretty unique flavor, and worth experiencing on its own before changing it up. I think it’s a love it or hate it thing, though. I liked what I’ve tried quite a bit, but it’s pretty intense and not something I’d do every day. Basically, I smelled smoke for two days after drinking it. I think it gets in your pores. ;-)

Doulton

I always try a tea without any milk or sugar for the first several sips. Then I will (sometimes) experiment mid cup with adding a splash of milk (I use whole milk for this purpose) and some brown sugar little cubelets—not full sized ones, but little crystals.

I do like to add milk and sugar to the Lapsang Souchongs. I don’t add any to green teas or white teas. The more bracing and robust the tea, the more likely I am to default to a milk and/or sugar addition.

SoccerMom

I chickened out this morning and picked the GM Irish Breakfast instead. I’m working my way up as I don’t want to “smell smoke for two days after drinking it.” :) Thanks for your advice.

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92
1192 tasting notes

How about a backlog? The good thing about backlog notes is I can make a post even when I’m not actually having any tea. (No specific reason, just drinking something else at the moment) The bad thing is I don’t really want to write up the ones that I didn’t like, so there’s a certain lack of balance in that document…

My Golden Moon debut and the second one of Auggy’s gift teas I’ve tried! When Auggy told me about what she would like to gift me with, she mentioned that this Lapsang Souchong has a surprisingly sweet flavour for an LS. It reminded me a bit of that sweet phantom note in A. C. Perch’s Lapsang that try as I might, I can’t find again.

The leaves smell very smoky, and the actual tea is smoky too. Quite smoky, in fact I’d say. Smoke is just not the first note I’m finding.

At first there is something way more substantial. Something solid. It’s (work with me here, Steepsterites) a bit like pu-erh, only without the earthyness. Without the cowstableness. I mean, it doesn’t taste like pu-erhs at all, it just sort of creates the same flavour intensity sensations.

Then, after that, YES!!! There it is! Sweetness. That same sort of sweet note that has disappeared from my ACP Lapsang. Smoky smoke is smoky, but underneath it the sweetness lies. I can only describe it as kind of thick. It’s not a specific flavour other than ‘something sweet’, but it tastes like something that would come in globs, not in puffs or powders.

There is also a small note of some kind of leaf-y something. It’s not grassy or fruity or any other word that suggests right-off-plant-ness, nor is it an earthy stored note like pu-erh. It’s in between. Like dried flowers (except it’s not a flowery flavour either) or leaves pressed between the pages of a heavy book

I seem to be using a lot of energy describing what this tea isn’t and very little energy on what it actually is. What it is is very nice indeed. I just wish I could recreate this same sweetness in my ACP lapsang.

All in all, I’m totally getting the whole camel driver vibe here.

Ricky

This one was way too much for me. I prefer your unknown green blend =P

JustDuckyInNE

I appreciate the detail; I think it adds to the description because so many of us have delighted in LS before. The comparison is great!

Auggy

Yay! I am glad you liked it! Smoky tea lovers UNITE! :)

sophistre

This was fun to read. I find this Lapsang the most forgiving of the (very) few I’ve tried. The sweetness is a little bit addictive!

Jim Marks

You know what I used to do all the time, actually? Cut loose pu-erh with lapsang and steep that. To get exactly what you’re talking about, there. a lapsang that has more roots than just smoke. LOVE that.

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95
158 tasting notes

So…RELIEVED.

I was so afraid that brewing this was going to make my house smell like cigarette ashes. I don’t smoke. I can’t stand the smell of it. More than that, I’m actually allergic to nicotine, so it weirds me out on a totally different level than I think just finding the smell unpleasant would weird me out. Thank HEAVENS that isn’t what this brewing produced. To me, this is campfire. Campfire and the pungent, tart scent and flavor of pine sap. I don’t have any trouble whatsoever locating the pine in this, which is…really quite the unusual sensory experience. It’s a completely independent flavor from the smoke. I can even taste the tea after I swallow each sip.

This is another one of those teas that brings to mind instantaneous memories for me, all of them connected to cabins and wood stoves, most of these enjoyed alongside a feeling of utter boneless exhaustion at the tail end of long day of snowboarding. It makes me think offhandedly of the trips I took to Mesa Verde when I was living in Colorado; some of the old Anasazi cliff-dwelling areas still have fire pits that seem as though they’re going to be stained forever with this sort of scent, where the red rocks have been blackened for all time.

I didn’t expect to like this, but I hoped that I would. I definitely do. I don’t know how much of it I would find myself wanting, but I could easily see myself adding this to my order. It’s so…cozy. So curl-up-on-a-futon-in-front-of-a-fire cozy.

Now that I’m getting halfway through the mug and it’s cooling slightly, it’s becoming surprisingly sweet on the finish! I really didn’t expect that. I thought I was going to have to add milk and sugar to this at the very least, and I haven’t added either, because I’ve been too interested in the flavors to risk covering them up. That’s a good sign.

Yeah. Yummy. Quite believably not for everyone, but I think most tea-ites recognize that lapsang souchong is a love it or hate it affair. I can’t even say that I like it broadly yet; for all I know I might just like this one…but I do like this one. Hallelujah.

Preparation
Boiling 5 min, 0 sec
Harney & Sons The Store

Lapsang Souchong is one of the best black teas ever! It’s easily accessible and the flavor is just amazing. We refer to it as standing next to a bonfire, so we’re all on the same page. If possible, I’d recommend looking for the other kinds of Lapsangs and Souchongs, like Maocha Souchong and Wuyi Shan Lapsang, both high end smokey teas from the Wuyi region in Eastern China.

sophistre

Oh, wow. I didn’t realize there were different kinds. And so…Lapsang and Souchong are two different things? Is the Wuyi Shan Lapsang an oolong? O.o

Robert Godden

Once you get bitten by the LS bug, you’ll drink it all the time

Harney & Sons The Store

Lapsang Souchong actually originated in the Wuyi area, but of course can be produced elsewhere. The Wuyi Shan Lapsang is another Chinese black tea, of higher quality, dried over the same types of smoking pines. Wuyi refers to the region of growth, processing and production.

Maocha roughly translates to “rough tea” or rather tea that has been plucked, and immediately put through the wilting, bruising and then drying process. Many raw Pu-Erhs are Maocha. Maocha Souchong simply meant that it was a rough tea that was not specifically dried over the smoked pines, but rather.. infused with the smoky flavor during the processing, giving it a much milder smoky flavor, allowing the brute of the flavor to be the raw tea.

Both these other options will sport the same great smoky flavor that we love, putting a stronger emphasis on the tea flavor itself, using the smoke as a backdrop.

I hope this helped, cause I feel slightly more confused after writing it!

sophistre

It did help! I’ve got a lot to learn, and every little bit helps. Thanks for the information. :) I’ll have to track them down to give them a try. This morning my kitchen still smells like a campfire…thinking I should’ve thrown the sample packet away, whoops. Good thing I like this stuff! Kind of sad I don’t have any left, actually…

teaplz

I find it HILARIOUS how divisive this one is! Part of me is really disappointed that I didn’t like it. I really wanted to like it! takgoti sent me some of Samovar’s, so maybe I’ll like that better… or maybe I just need time to “acquire” the taste for this one and get over the fact that it’s savory and smokey. Because I tend to like smoke in other things! And I liked Scarlet Sable… hrm.

sophistre

Everybody’s palate is a little different. It’s definitely not a subtle cup. Maybe you’d dig on the Russian caravan tea? That’s like…lapsang, keemun, and…one other tea, isn’t it? …Now I’m not sure. I wish like heck that Andrews & Dunham accepted AmEx. x.x I’m really interested in trying their Caravan from series 3.

Harney & Sons The Store

I think sometimes the 3rd part of RC is Formosa, though ours is just Keemun and LS.

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40
186 tasting notes

So, I… er… hrm.

This one difficult. Really difficult. It’s my first experience with lapsang souchong, and… I. Wow, I’m just flabbergasted.

Well, let’s start with the basics, shall we? I was actually really looking forward to lapsang souwhatever because I really liked the smokiness of gunpowder, and figured that this was the black tea equivalent. And let me tell you, from the get go, Golden Moon’s blend smells fantastic! It smells like BACON. I was practically skipping around my kitchen, sniffing the little package and smiling. Bacon! Bacon tea! MMMMM. The smell is like hickory BBQ, savory and sweet and a bit ashy. I was entranced. I kept thinking of foods to pair with it. “I bet this would be AWESOME with eggs!”

So anyway, I steeped this one up, and that’s when I ran into the first sign of trouble. The leaves smell like ashes. Wet ashes from a cigarette. I’m not a fan of cigarettes at all; in fact, I pretty much loathe the smell of them. So now I’m wrinkling my nose and dumping those leaves, stat. The liquid still has a smoky smell, but there’s really a wet ash smell down in the pit of it. And now I’m not so sure anymore about how I feel about this one… The infusion was a really pretty dark copper, by the way.

So I brace myself and take my first sip. And I’m utterly confused and perplexed. It’s just… weird. Very savory, and very deep and dark. Ultra-smokey. Like I just inhaled a bunch of smoke from a campfire and somehow it’s in liquid form and now it’s in my tummy. I think I’m tasting hints of pine, and touches of the black tea base, but I’m just getting really weirded out by the entire experience.

I almost feel like I’m drinking carcinogens in a mug. Seriously. I keep thinking to myself, is this good for me? As it’s cooling down, the upfront ashy taste is mellowing out, but I’m sipping this one slowly. Very, very slowly. I’m actually not really sure if I like this or not. If I’m just so weirded out by the entire sensory experience and can’t process it properly. If it tastes awesome or just plain horrible. I’m actually leaning more towards the horrible side with this.

And I’m actually sort of tremendously disappointing. My entire family is now complaining that my kitchen smells like smoke. Hell, I’m pretty sure I smell like smoke. This is just very, very strange. I can’t get over how WEIRD this is. Okay, I know I’m babbling though, but… it’s weird. WEIRD.

I think I’m done now.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec
Angrboda

I totally agree about the bacon smell. :)
A colleague of mine has described LS as ’standing in a smokefilled room with a mouth full of water. :)

It can be a bit much on it’s own. I would suggest trying with a bit of milk? That can smooth it out some. I also seem to like it more when in a blend these days, but given your initial reaction to it I’m not sure it would really help you much. Bit like rooibos IMO, for most people it’s a love or hate thing.

teaplz

As it’s hitting room temperature, it’s definitely getting a bit more tolerable and bacon-like, but the wet smell of ashes was just killing me! Maybe I’ll try adding a bit of milk to smooth it out, or even bringing the steep time way down. GM suggest 5-7 minutes, so yeah, it’s like smoke to the extreme.

And I LOVE bacon, so this is just a cup of weird for me.

Auggy

I reserve the right to recommend you try ROT’s lapsang souchong once I see how GM’s compares to it. It was more sweet cigar and maple-smoked ham than cigarette ash (gross, btw) but I might have had a better reaction to it because I approached with fear, not anticipation. Maybe I’ll get the chance to try this one this weekend.

Angrboda

7 minutes definitely sounds like a very long steep for such a strong tea. Auggy’s mention of maple-smoked makes me want to try and sweeten a cup of mine with a little bit of maple syrup. :p

sophistre

Man. This is super-depressing to me. The fireside smoke aspect sounded so alluring to me, even if only in small doses now and then. I’ve rarely ever hated smelling like a good campfire…such a cozy smell…and, well, living on the 18th floor the way I do, you can guess how often I get to smell THAT anymore.

I don’t smoke though. And I am allergic. And the smell of intentionally-inhaled-smoke repulses me. I will be eagerly watching for your updates to see whether or not you can make this work for you!

Bethany

Yeah, 7 minutes is WAY too long for a Lapsang Souchong. 5 is the most I can stand.

It really is one of those love it or hate it things. I have Adagio’s version and I adore it.

teaplz

I did it at 6, but man… oh man. This tea is now an entity that is sitting around my house, preying on everyone that walks into my basement. Seriously. Everyone’s like, “WHAT IS THAT SMELL WHAT DID YOU DO.”

feel it’s PERMEATED EVERY ONE OF MY PORES and now I’m just one big piece of smoked meat.

Cofftea

You get bacon? I just get campfire. 52teas has a maple bacon tea if you’re interested.;)

teaplz

OMG I needed to wash out and dismantle my IngenuiTEA about 7 times just to get the smell out. NEVER AGAIN.

Bethany

Hey, how much do you have left of the sample? Interested in a trade?

Janni

@cofftea: Maple. Bacon. TEA?!? Oh dear, must investigate. Sounds much better than this. I’m not the biggest lapsang souchong fan either, BTW. D:

Jillian

I think I remember someone describing Lapsang as wet socks that got dropped in a campfire, LOL. To me it’s more like liquid BBQ, bleh! I’ll stick to my Russian Caravan, thank you very much! :D

teaplz

Bethany, there is probably ~1/2 cup left, so it’s probably not a good idea to trade it away, hehe. I’ll probably give it to my boyfriend as a “surprise.”

Jillian, wet socks! Hahahaha! Russian Caravan… I know it’s related to Lapsang, but how does it differ?

Ricky

I’m going to have a field day with this tea! Maybe I should make some pasta with this tea. Bacon tea flavored pasta, yum! xD

Carolyn

Lapsang Souchong is one of the very few teas I sweeten. I also add creamer to it (but I do that with all blacks). Taken like that the flavors round out a bit. No question that it’s a weird tea experience, but it is one that I will probably do again. I have the sense that there is something in me that likes this tea, I just need to make contact. I think it would be wonderful to marinate tofu in.

Jillian

Russian Caravan is a blended tea that contains Lapsang mixed with other black teas, usually Keemum or Ceylon – so it’s a lot less smokey. However how much less smokey it is can really vary from company to company as there are no set ratios for the amount of Lapsang in the mix.

Angrboda

Jillian, if you added a green tea to that it sounds like you would end up with something similar to my gunpowder blend. To think I’ve been pretty much sitting on a nearly Russian Caravan all this time and I didn’t know it.

teaplz

I didn’t think that the smokiness of Gunpowder and the smokiness of Lapsang tasted the same at all. They’re actually really distinctive. Lapsang is definitely the stronger of the two, with a more of a southern BBQ taste. Gunpowder… I can’t even describe, but it’s more mellow.

denisend

Oh, my. Russian Caravan is LESS smoky than this? I’m FRIGHTENED to try this, since I REALLY didn’t like the RC I had last year. Wow.

laurenpressley

It’s no wonder I don’t like LS…. I can’t stand bacon either!! :)

Cofftea

I agree teaplz. I think that’s also because they’re different types of tea- green just couldn’t hold up to the flavor bang of lapsang souchong.

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135 tasting notes

I bought a couple of samples of this when I placed my first Golden Moon order a little over a week ago. Never having tried it before, I didn’t know if I wanted a tin of this hanging around.

In anticipation of my order arriving I was reading up on the teas that would eventually find their way to my front door. I found a recipe for tea eggs using Lapsang Souchong ( http://steepster.com/discuss/14-cooking-w-slash-tea?page=5 ) and knew I had to try it as soon as the tea order arrived.

I tore into the small sample package and scooped out the tablespoon’s worth of tea. Regret of not buying a full tin washed over me – this is deliciously smokey; as in bacony and barbecue-y.

High hopes for the tea eggs were in order. 6 hours later, I tried the first one. The egg had a slight smokiness to it! YUM! I could see myself going through the trouble of using tea eggs as smoked deviled eggs sometime.

I have to try the other sample of this properly, as a beverage. Regardless of whether or not I like drinking it, I’ll probably acquire a tin of this if nothing more than to cook with!

Preparation
Boiling 8 min or more
Vortegne

I want to try this so badly, still waiting for mine to arrive from Tea Vivre

Bonnie

I love LS! If you read any of my notes for China Lapsang Souchong from Happy Luckys or Teavivre there are probably recipe ideas that I’ve stuck in also.I steam veggies with it in the water!

Will Work For Tea

Yes, I have read those! Looking forward to trying those out too! :)

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1
117 tasting notes

I think this is one of those tea types that you will either love or hate. I don’t think that there’s a lot of room for somewhere in between, here. I am in the latter camp. So far, this is the worst tea I’ve ever had.

I was excited about the prospect of trying a completely different, new-to-me kind of tea, and I am still very happy that I got to try it. I’m even happier that I didn’t go out on one of my tea-buying adventures and spend a bunch of money on this; the Golden Moon sampler was more than enough.

I put the water to boil, took out my kitchen scissors, and snipped the end off the packet. There was no need to stick my prodigious proboscis in the packet and inhale deeply—it was like the aroma was just waiting to escape, and within a matter of moments my whole kitchen smelled like a smokehouse. Having no knowledge of lapsang souchong, I was quite taken aback and rather sceptical. Instead of adding my customary demerara sugar to the tea, I actually felt like adding salt. The whole thing was a very strange experience, and I hadn’t even tasted the tea yet.

Well, things only rolled further downhill from there. I took one (unsweetened) sip of the tea and the flavour accurately matched the aroma. I didn’t like it, but I thought I would give it a chance, so I tried a few more sips. In my mind, I was drinking water that had been poured into a mug by way of a bed of coals. This might be the first mug of tea that I couldn’t finish because it made me physically ill. Lesson learned: I do not like lapsang souchong. =)

Preparation
Boiling 7 min, 0 sec
__Morgana__

It is definitely a polarizing tea. Though I like it, I can’t drink it often. With some of the particularly resiny versions, the taste stays with me much longer than it is welcome. The smokiness feels like its still in my skin and the inside of my nose for days after I’ve had it. I prefer the ones that have a salted meat or pine needle flavor along with the smoke to the ashy, resiny ones.

Nik

I can see the appeal of that, I think. I might be tempted to try a shot glass-sized sample of bacon tea, if such a creature exists. After I get over the trauma of this tasting, that is. =)

DaisyChubb

If you ever get some Maple Bacon tea from 52teas Nik, the smoke flavour is VERY light, so I think you might enjoy it!
If we ever do a swap, I’ll throw some in :3

Terri HarpLady

Although I’m not a big fan of drinking Lapsang Souchong, I have a recipe that uses it to marinate a baked chicken, which was an interesting change of pace. If you’ve got some of the tea sitting around & want to use it up, I’d be glad to pass the recipe along.

LiberTEAS

Not all Lapsang Souchong is created equal, either. I recommend trying the Lapsang Souchong from Dr. Tea http://www.teagarden.com/black-lapsang-souchong-c-38-p-2-pr-400.html … or even trying an unsmoked Lapsang Souchong like this one from Townshend’s Tea http://www.townshendstea.com/black-teas/unsmoked-lapsang-souchong

Nik

Thank you for the suggestions and replies, everyone. @Terri: This was just a sample, so I haven’t any of it left (thank goodness). @DaisyChubb: omg there is such a beast‽ That’s pretty awesome. Thanks for the swap offer! I’ll drop you a line when I’ve updated my cupboard and maybe we can sort something out.

DaisyChubb

Sounds good Nik! No rush, I’m waiting on some funds before I have some money to send off a package, but I will definitely save you some for when the time comes :D

jenny wren

If you ever run across one that says it is very lightly smoked maybe try it again some day…it might grow on you.

Nik

If I do, Jenny, I will need to remember to use a different mug. Two days and three washings later, my mug still smells like that blasted tea! [growly face]

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61
382 tasting notes

Golden Moon Sampler Tea #23 (I think)
I am a bad person. Ever since I saw the entry about tea eggs in the cooking with tea thread, I have been wanting to make some. And lo and behold! I have five random eggs sitting in the fridge doing nothing. It is the PERFECT opportunity.

But wait! I am out of Lapsang Souchong! Except…for the Golden Moon sample! But it would be Wrong to use that without trying it! So, compromise! Brew up a smaller cup, try THAT, use the rest for tea eggs! Yay! Once again the day is saved by thinking about something for longer than 10 seconds.

Well, I’m not gonna have results on the tea eggs for a while, but I have mixed feelings about this stuff. At first, it seemed comparatively weaker in its smokiness than other LSes that I have tried. On the other hand, the aftertaste is VERY strongly smoky, so I’m wondering if it isn’t that sweet note that some of the other reviews mentioned making me THINK that the smokiness is weaker.

In sum. I don’t know. I’m not THAT big of a smoky tea aficionado, so I think I’ll just table the issue. Perhaps one day I will meet a Lapsang Souchong that I can’t live without, but apparently this isn’t it.

Preparation
Boiling 6 min, 0 sec
Stephanie

I hope your tea eggs turn out delicious! I love tea eggs (my grandma called them “century eggs”).

Cinoi

I feel like I missed something, what are tea eggs?

Ewa

This thread: http://steepster.com/discuss/14-cooking-w-tea
page 5. They’re basically hard-boiled eggs marinated in a mixture of tea, soy sauce and some other stuff if you are so inclined. You crack the shells to let the mixture seep through. I’ve never made them before, but the Chinese teachers in my department make them for potlucks all the time. Super tasty!

Cinoi

Hmm, definitely going to have to try this with some of the LS I have around…thanks!!

Ewa

Ok, so I actually tried one of them last night because I have no patience. HUGE SUCCESS! (so tasty! I’m gonna have to buy more lapsang souchong just so I can make these more often)

Cinoi

That’s great! I can’t wait to try it :)

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83
937 tasting notes

Golden Moon Sampler No. 2 of 31. Eyes wide shut random drawing.

I’m gonna run a few laps today, I think. Maybe three. This one, the remaining bit of my Life in Teacup sample, and the Samovar sample.

As I think about it, this may end up being a mistake. I may not be able to get the smell of smoke out of my pores and nose hairs for a few days. (So I’m going to stop thinking about that for fear I might chicken out.)

Before I begin, a disclaimer about sample size. My Samovar is the biggest (about 1.8 cups worth) and its steeping instructions call for a cup of water. According to my scale, this is too much water for this sample. Of course, according to my scale, the GM sample is enough for 1.4 cups. So I’m going to steep the GM and the Samovar in the same amount of water in my 12 or so ounce cup and hope that evens things out a bit, even though there will have been more water in the GM than the Samovar (as the GM had no instructions as to the amount of water). The Life in Teacup sample is the last little bit, about enough for .4 cups. So I’ll adjust water volume accordingly, but the memory of its taste is still quite fresh from my last tasting so that ought to balance things out a bit as well.

On to this one. The dry leaves are dark, brown/green. Greener than, and slightly shorter than the others, but not shorter by much. Their dominant scent is ash, but there’s an interesting chocolate note in there. It’s the smell of the air in a calm residential neighborhood on a fall evening when many houses have lit up their fireplaces for the first fire of the season.

The steeped aroma is gently smoky. There is pine, and a tobacco note as well. The liquor color is medium amber. I expected darker, but it’s a very appealing color.

Now here’s where I scratch my head a bit and wonder if I used too much water (though I think I used the right amount). Full-bodied, this is not. At least not in my view of full-bodied. I would call this medium-bodied. It has a high coffee note, and of course, it’s smoky. But unlike my last lapsang experience, it’s not entirely about the smoke. There’s a strong woody flavor; it’s almost as woody as it is smoky. And by woody, I don’t mean woodsy/piney/sap/evergreen/conifer stuff. I mean it evokes an unfinished furniture store or a lumberyard. (Not to be confused with sawdust. It’s far deeper and more appealing than that.) It’s a pleasant taste and endearing to me, as it reminds me of my long dead grandfather whose trade in the old country was cabinetmaker.

It’s only my second lapsang souchong, and I’m looking forward to exploring more. I may change my mind as I sample more but for now I’d definitely drink this again as an alternative to the deep, almost tarry, pervasive smokiness of a more full-bodied lapsang.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
Doulton

I am simply mad about the LS. Maybe I’m accustomed to stronger teas, but I’m taking my entire Golden Moon samples and using them with 4-6 ounces of water maximum.

__Morgana__

I usually do a full packet of a Samovar sample in a cup of water, which is what they recommend, but I was trying to calibrate for fairness here and perhaps my attempt backfired. I’m likely to order more of this so I’ll give it a try as you suggested.

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