Fengqing Dragon Pearl Black Tea

Tea type
Black Tea
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Baked Bread, Honey, Malt, Autumn Leaf Pile, Burnt Sugar, Cocoa, Earth, Mineral, Toast, Wood, Chocolate, Raisins, Wet Earth, Leather
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Edit tea info Last updated by TeaVivre
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 45 sec 6 g 9 oz / 273 ml

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254 Tasting Notes View all

From Teavivre

Origin: Fengqing, Yunnan, China

Ingredients: The leaves come from wild tea trees

Harvest time: March 29, 2013

Taste: Taste sweet and smooth, with a slight flavor of chocolate

Brew: 3-4 pieces for 8oz of water. Brew at 212 ºF (100 ºC) for 1 to 2 minutes (exact time depends on your taste – a longer time will give the tea a stronger taste and color)

Health Benefits: Being a fully oxidised – or fermented – black tea, it does not have the same level of antioxidants that our White and Green teas have, however it is still a good source of these and so will also help reduce the risk of cancers and lessen the affects of aging. Black teas such as our Fengqing black also are considered to help prevent tooth decay and help lower your cholesterol levels.

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254 Tasting Notes

199 tasting notes

I slept in this morning, and now I feel a little groggy and out of my element. I’ve got a lot of stuff/chores to do, and ‘cos I feel so bleh, it’s gonna be hard to get going.

So to make myself feel better I decided chocolate was the way to go. Chocolate tea, that is. YUM! Malty, chocolatey deliciousness.

Thanks for the sample, Dexter!

Cameron B.

How did you brew them? Trying to find the sweet spot on this one. :)


Western style. 4 pearls with near boiling H20. Hope you find what works for you! Is so good.

Cameron B.

How long did you let it go for?


Oops…sorry, meant to include that. 1st steep 4 min, 2nd at 6 min.

Cameron B.

Thanks for the help! I really want to love this one but I felt it didn’t live up to its full potential when I tried it. :P

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221 tasting notes

Hello everyone, I hope you’re all having good weekends! I decided to do gong fu with this tea today because I felt like I wasn’t getting the full potential when I tasted it western-style. I mostly used TeaVivre’s parameters, but adjusted the amount of water to 4 ounces and then used 4 grams of tea, which turned out to be 4 pearls. I also used 200 degree water instead of boiling.

The method: 4g tea per 4oz water, 200 degrees, 10s rinse/30/50/70/90/120s

Rinse (10s): very light, woody, golden raisins (the pearls puffed up but held their shape)

Steep 1 (30s): strong bitter cocoa with some woodiness, burnt sugar (the pearls fell apart completely!)

Steep 2 (50s): very earthy in a mineral sense (licking a rock comes to mind), bitter cocoa

Steep 3 (70s): mellower earthiness, autumn leaves, dark but not bitter cocoa

Steep 4 (90s): very similar to steep 2, earthy and highly mineral

Steep 5 (120s): similar to steep 3, mellow earth with autumn leaves, buttered toast!

So, I was not a big fan of those highly earthy and mineral steeps… In fact, I didn’t finish either of them. Just blegh. My favorites were the first and last steeps, which suggests to me that maybe I should try this again with shorter steeps? Or maybe I’ll just stick to western-style with this one.

Any suggestions for a gong fu method that won’t bring out so much earthy/mineral flavor would be greatly appreciated! I only have enough of this left for one more cup or session… So I want to get it right! :P

I also noticed that there’s a tad bit of water left in the bottom after I drain the leaves. I’m assuming this is okay, since I don’t see how I would get all of it without dumping into a strainer. Would love to be corrected if I’m wrong!

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Burnt Sugar, Cocoa, Earth, Mineral, Toast, Wood

200 °F / 93 °C 4 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

This is a great tea! Hope you are having a good weekend too! I’m at work actually, boo.

Cameron B.

Thanks Stephanie! What’s your favorite way to brew this one? And I’m sorry you have to be at work! :(


I like it semi-western! Long and super rich steeps for me :)

I usually only get 2 or 3 steeps that way though. Sorry it’s not tasting like you’d hoped!

Cameron B.

How long do you usually let it go for? The website recommends 5-10 minutes, sheesh. :P


4-5 mins usually


It DOES take a while for those pearls to unfurl!


I am dying to try this!!!!


Oh Sars – I have a shitload and I don’t love it so I can send you plenty

Cameron B.

MzPriss, I don’t love it either so far. Going to try the Stephanie method last and hopefully that makes it for me!


I can try the Stephanie way – people seem to love it, but I havent so far


Cam sent me some, MzP. I’ll try it and report back. :o)


It sounded like just the kind of thing I would love so I got one of those Teavivre tins of it. I can’t get it to the point where it tastes the way others describe it tasting.

Cameron B.

Luckily mine was one of the free samples I chose, so I didn’t pay for it. It’s not bad, but it seems fairly nondescript to me, and I don’t seem to get chocolate like others do. :(


I used 4 pearls in 6 oz. for 5 min. Seemed to work pretty well. I thought it was good! I definitely found a little cocoa.


Interesting that everyone’s experience is so different!


Stephanie it always surprises me how differently people experience tastes and smells in tea

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340 tasting notes

I keep wanting to call this Black Pearls. It has a nice chocolate scent (that could also be my kitchen, as I just made cakes). The flavour is a bit towards the mildly sweet hot cocoa side. Not overly strong, just delicious.

Flavors: Chocolate

205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec

I know, I should have let them send me more.

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112 tasting notes

This is my first shot at little balls of tea! What happy things they appear to be…like gum balls but all black! I am charmed. Since my western brewing tea ware of choice is 16 oz, I just unceremoniously dumped all the balls in the wee sample packet into the pot and steeped for 8 minutes….half way between the 5-10 minute recommendation. Well! Those wee tea balls sure opened into some larger leaves! Unexpected! (Kind of reminds me of those little gelatin capsules that had the sponges shaped like animals smooshed inside them and you let them float in the bathtub til they became sponges…) The dry smell of the leaf was chocolatey and tea-y. Wet….well, they just kind of smelled like wet leaves to me! Not quite sure why, but wet hot leaves and a touch of hot wet earth. Once in the cup, I found that the tea’s aroma had that chocolate note I detected in the dry leaf/balls, a bit of hot wet earth and just a smidgen of malt. Less malt than I was expecting by looking at the reviews, actually! The flavor profile has the chocolate and warm wet earth notes and adds a bit of a raisin middle note to it. There’s not much of a top note to this tea, so I would say that this is a deep-flavored tea for days when you need “grounding”…. something that helps you settle into the middle of your problems and start to relax to truly come up with solutions… It’s that kind of tea…oh, it’s also something they would probably enjoy in the Shire. Take your pick of the mental pictures provided above and have a cup! (I know which one you will probably choose, my precious!)

Flavors: Chocolate, Raisins, Wet Earth

Boiling 8 min or more 7 g 16 OZ / 473 ML

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493 tasting notes

A sample from Miss B, I’d been wanting to try this one based on all the reviews!

I have never had any tea in pearl form before, so it was pretty neat to watch them unfurl. Times like this I wish I had a clear glass teapot!

I was expecting more chocolate from this tea, I found it tasty, different from other black teas I’ve tried. I didn’t notice any cocoa notes and no fruity notes, but I found it to be mildly earthy in a pleasant way, not like a pu’erh. I have no idea what leather tastes like but that actually might be a description that makes sense, since I can’t quite put my finger on anything else.

I used three pearls and have three left to try again!

Thanks Bonny!

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8 tasting notes

The first crown of my Triple Crown of black tea. Smooth and full of flavor it is a cup that I can enjoy at any time of the day. It is simply a wonderful black tea.

With my 16 ounce infuser and 6-8 balls (dependent upon size), I start at 185F/85C for 2:45 and increase the temperature for progressive steeps and find very nice cups through 3 steeps with the third being at 200F/93C.

Flavors: Cocoa

185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 45 sec 9 tsp 15 OZ / 443 ML

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104 tasting notes

Got this as a sample in my last Teavivre order. A fifteen second rinse made the leaves open up and release a heady, dark chocolatey fragrance. I used 4 pearls with about 10 oz of water just under boiling for 2 minutes. “Slight” flavor of chocolate…ha! The predominant flavor to me is chocolate/cocoa. It’s rich, malty and juicy, with a thick lingering sweetness. It’s not a heavy tea by any means. It’s very light on the tongue, but the flavors that stay after sipping are full and rich. Delicious…not overly complex, but very satisfying to me. I could use it as a comfort tea. I’m sad that I only have a sample of this left. (: I’d like to spend more time with this, maybe gong fu brew it over a day.

Flavors: Chocolate, Cocoa, Honey, Malt


There is some in the UTTB


I should have gotten a sample while it was here, but I knew I had an unopened sample at home with me. Regrets…

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1820 tasting notes

These were my first dragon pearls and I was very excited to try them out. I used 6 pearls for 16 oz of water and steeped them for 5 minutes which I felt was long but that is what the site instructed. Luckily, the end result is neither bitter nor astringent. Instead, it is a smooth and slightly malty cup with notes of chocolate and Earth. I have another 6 pearls and when I brew those up, I might try a shorter steep time to see how that impacts the flavor as I am hoping to tone down the earth quality a bit and highlight the chocolate. Milk/sweetener might also do the trick but this cup I have chosen to drink straight and I am enjoying it nonetheless. Thank you Dexter for sharing these with me. It has been a fun experience for my first time with dragon pearls :).


Sweet will for sure up the chocolate – I also find that a lower water temp 90-95C (not sure what was recommended) really brings out the flavour…


I think I used around 95C. Next time I will try closer to 90 with a shorter steep time and see how that goes

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140 tasting notes

These pearls are huge! I used just 4 and they unfurled to a massive amount of tea. It’s fun to watch :) I’m still developing my palette as far as unflavored blacks go, so I couldn’t really pick up on all the flavor notes other reviewers have detected (leather?) but this is a very rich malty black tea, perfect for the morning.

205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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50 tasting notes

I received this sample from the incomparable MissB. Thank you so much for sending this, because I’m in love with this one!
I used 5 pieces in my gaiwan, and followed the directions from the website (rinse 10 sec, then 30 sec infusion, adding 20 sec after for each infusion).
The dry tea itself smelled so lovely….chocolate and malty and utterly delightful.
Smooth mouth feel with such balanced notes.
As I progressed through infusions, the taste would shift (the chocolate sometimes being right there in the front, other times hanging back…), but each one so intriguing, fascinating my taste buds (seriously, this was a GREAT tea experience).
Definitely will add this one to my ‘must buy’ list.

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