Lapsang Souchong Smoky Black Tea (Yan Xun Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong)

Tea type
Black Tea
Black Tea Leaves
Ash, Cedar, Menthol, Pine, Smoke, Wet Wood, Toffee, Vanilla, Earth, Scotch, Wood, Leather, Plums, Sweet, Burnt, Tar, Malt, Molasses, Peanut, Tobacco, Cream, Spices, Campfire
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Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by TeaVivre
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 15 sec 6 g 11 oz / 311 ml

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111 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Not really ready to review this, just giving more of an update. My tea and my kettle set up were the last things I removed from office. I had two grocery sacks of tea – mostly samples. This...” Read full tasting note
    ks6 1678 tasting notes
  • “Backlogging from this morning: i realized I hadn’t tealogged this one today when my youngest daughter walked by and said, with great depth of feeling, “Mom, we have Read full tasting note
    ashmanra 2146 tasting notes
  • Thank you Teavivre for this tea sample! Ya’ll know I love me some Lapsang Souchong…Amen! (left over accent from living in Texas years ago!…long story…)...” Read full tasting note
    bonniejohnstone 675 tasting notes
  • “This is what I took to work today. We’re getting the outer edges of Hurricane Sandy, so the world outside is gray, cold, and very windy. The perfect day for something that smells and tastes...” Read full tasting note
    tabby 530 tasting notes

From Teavivre

Origin: Wuyi Mountain, Fujian, China

Ingredients: Da Bai Hao (Pekoe)

Harvest time: April 14, 2015

Taste: smoked taste, mellow, sweet aftertaste

Brew: 2-3 teaspoons for 8oz of water. Brew at 194ºF (90 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: Black teas contain antioxidants, which help in the prevention of some cancers and help reduce the affects of aging that is caused by free radicals. They can also reduce the risk of strokes and heart attacks due to natural chemicals that reduce cholesterol.

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111 Tasting Notes

60 tasting notes

This sample was generously provide to me by Teavivre. Thank you Angel and the whole Teavivre Team.
Dry Leaf: Had a sweet and smokey pine aroma.
Wet Leaf: Had the smokey pine aroma.
Liquor: Had a bright and beautiful reddish brown color.
Taste: Had a perfect amount of the pine smoke flavor. This tea was smooth and not bitter at all. The soup was more on the watery side.
Overall Opinion:I give this tea a 89. This tea I believe is a love it or hate it type of tea. I find it very unique. This tea is very smooth and no bitterness. The tea reminds me of sitting by a nice campfire. The only thing I would want from this tea is more texture to the tea soup and that cooling effect you get in the after taste of higher quality Lapsang Souchongs. Again, can not be to hard on this tea since it is not overly smokey and so smooth with a pinch of sweetness.
Vessel: SAMA DOYO Gongfu/Kungfu Teapot. I used 7 grams of leaf for 220ml or approx. 7oz. water in the inner cup of pot.

195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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278 tasting notes

We had some friends over tonight, and one of them was from the Netherlands. I brought this out for him to sniff, and he immediately knew exactly what it was, which made me so happy to know there are more people like me! :) Although he pronounced it more like Lapsang Soo-Wong, which may be the correct way to pronounce it, I have no idea. He picked this out to drink and was very happy with it!

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143 tasting notes

Backlog from last night. Or was it two nights ago? I don’t remember.

Anyway, I got this as a sample from TeaVivre ages ago and have finally gotten around to trying it out. Thanks, Angel and Teavivre!

This is going to be a short note since I didn’t write anything down whichever night I had this.

Smoky, but less so than some other lapsang souchongs I’ve had. Most of the smokiness seems to be in the smell. Smooth, malty, with a bit of sweetness that becomes more pronounced as it cools. Very enjoyable with the fall weather!

Thanks again, Angel and Teavivre!

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166 tasting notes

I’ve never tried a Lapsang Souchong until this one that came as part of the black tea sampler I purchased. Since the description said smoky, I assumed it would not be “my cup of tea” but was pleasantly surprised at how the smoky flavor was just right, not overwhelming the tea flavor. It is a subtle and smooth cup of tea. It would probably never be an everyday cup for me, but that’s a matter of personal taste, not quality. I can envision when cooler weather arrives in the fall,that this would be a very enjoyable cup to savor.

195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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1 tasting notes

A new encounter for me so m expectation are a bit high.

the smell inside bag was very smoky, the dry leaves smelled very good, dark and campfire like, just like a goos Lapsang. Using 2tsp of leaves into my teapot for making a cup, and used the suggested time and steep temp. The brew was as expected smoky in flavor, still powerful it filled my senses.

So I scooped out 2 tsp of leaves and put it in my gaiwan, then adding the hot water at the suggested 90 c. temperature. Sniffing the tea liquor as it brewed, the scent of smoke is still pretty powerful, perfect.

My first sip was lighter than the smell earthy, slightly smoky, slightly sweet and a velvety feel. a slight cocoa aftertaste reminiscent of the aroma, very nice touch.

In all it was a very good Lapsang, that i enjoyed. classic but just different enough to be engaging, and work its way into my cupboard.

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529 tasting notes

Lapsang souchong smokey black tea. Yan xun zheng xiao zhong. Tea review

ru yao drsgon teapot gongfucha

Dry leaf: smokey, pine, basketballs.

Wet leaf: smokey, pine, spices, basketballs.

1x short rinse

Light steep: I smell/taste; light -> smoke, pine, cream, basketballs.

Medium steep: I smell/taste; medium -> spices, pine, smoke, basketballs. Light cream.

Heavy steep: I smell/taste: strong -—> pine, smoke, basketballs spices. Light cream.

All in all, a wonderful tea! The taste, smell and cha qi, so lovely!

I rate a 100

Flavors: Cream, Pine, Smoke, Spices

200 °F / 93 °C 10 g 6 OZ / 165 ML

Mmm basketballs.


yeah it tastes/smells like a basketball would if you were to sniff one or chew on one. i never chewed on one before but i assume that is what it would taste like on the grounds that 90% of what you smell, it would taste like :D


if you can ask google. you can possibly find some studies on it ;)


in short the air you smell touches your toung


It’s a weird descriptor, but I do know exactly the smell you’re talking about :)


one can also say nike shoes


Ah, that rubbery smell. That sounds like an odd flavor for tea. Of course, Osmanthus tastes like Eyeshadow to me.

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3620 tasting notes

Sipdown (126)!

Another from the lovely Christina!

I was excited to get to add the flavours of this LS to my yixing pot: I have to say that it’s coming along very nicely. I can take it out of the box it’s stored in and immediately smell smoke notes! I’d love to get to a point where I can pour plain water out of the teapot and have it take on a subtle smoke flavour…

I enjoyed this tea Gong Fu out of the yixing, but also paired with a Pineapple Fried Rice which was phenomenal. Pineapple and LS is one of my favourite pairings because you’re basically pairing the sweet, juicy and tangy fruit notes of the pineapple with the more meaty, savory and smoky LS. It’s sort of the same idea as pairing pineapple and ham. Yummy! It certainly elevated the session, as well.

The tea itself was great too; this isn’t an overly strong Lapsang Souchong. More than anything it’s like a sweet, woody LS with a more smoky undertone/finish. Delightful but overall fairly mild, all things considered. Quite smooth though – as far as LS goes.


Ooh! Pineapple upside down cake with LS?

Roswell Strange

Hmm, I think a Pineapple Upside Down Cake COULD work if it had more fruitiness than your run of the mill cake. Or equal fruitiness, at least.

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104 tasting notes

Water: 10oz (1 1/4 cup)

Leaves:tiny chopped blackish brown leaves

Steep: rinse,15s,25s,40s,60s,90s,120s,180s

Aroma: burnt & smokey

Color: Amber

Clarity: Great

Taste: I was browsing the internet trying to figure out how much tea is 5g worth & stumbled upon the Steepster Main Blog (Tips for Measuring Dry Tea Leaf). This afternoon I wanted to start off with something a bit on the stronger side which is why I went with this tea. Upon opening the packed the aroma packed a powerful punch of smokey & burnt. Soon after I went to the website & read how it’s made from there everything made sense. This time around although not using a Gaiwan I followed the Chinese Gongfu Way which started off with a rinse making the aroma standout even more followed by a very quick steep of 15s. The scent remained as I prepared my cup. Taking the first sip It was very nice and light with no bitterness. Note i tried this with 10oz of water as compared to the usual 8oz. The other cups I plan to mix up the water amount to see how that changes the taste. I may not do all 7 steeps but well see as the day goes on.

195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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1151 tasting notes

This is a tasty smoked tea. I get a lot of the notes listed in the description. Smoke, earth, pine, scotch, leather, molasses, ash and tobacco to name a bunch. Or at least there is one note that tastes like any of those things.

I brewed this one time in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 3 tsp leaf and boiling water for 3 min.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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2031 tasting notes

I wanted to try this one while the other Lapsang was still in my memory from a couple days ago. Right away, the scent from the dry black leaves with hints of gold are definitely smoky. Where the Nonpareil Dian Hong Wild Ancient Tree had many characteristics BUT smoke, this one seems to have smoke as the main flavor. This cup is darker than the light amber of the Wild — a much deeper red cup. The smokiness isn’t the strongest smoke flavor I have had in a tea, but it is definitely noticeable. The smoke makes the black tea itself tough for me to figure out but it tastes fine to me. The second steep is just as strong. This is a great option for all you smoky tea fans, at a great price. Not my favorite tea from Teavivre, but that seems to be all of the others. :D
Steep #1 // half a sample pouch for a mug (about 3.5 grams or 2 tsps.) // 10 minutes after boiling // 2 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 minute
Harvest: 2014

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