My first ever Chinese black tea….mmm. I won’t try to describe it because I don’t have enough experience with them and everyone else’s description here is so good! If this is what Chinese blacks are like I am going to have to try more :)
“SIPDOWN! *gasp* Alright...i have a bunch of backlogs to do but first i needed to pay attention to this tea. You see kittylovestea really wanted to try this, so i opened my bag up and realised...” Read full tasting note
“Yes, I'm drinking this again! It's my birthday, so I can drink anything I want! Of course, I can drink anything I want any day of the year, but this seemed like a perfect start today, & it was....” Read full tasting note
“Brewed up a bunch of this quite strong for icing - I'll see how that fares in the morning! In the meanwhile, I'm enjoying a second infusion, which, possibly because it's more than double strength,...” Read full tasting note
“I snagged 4 oz of the autumn version of this tea after feeling a bit anxious about the last of my spring tea getting sipped down. Now I'm pretty much at peace, enjoying the strong chocolate/barley...” Read full tasting note
This is one of the pioneer black teas from Laoshan. The village only started experimenting with making black tea out of their uniquely bean-like green tea a year or two ago.
Early steepings are remarkably smooth and creamy, reminiscent of a floral Big Red Robe in their creamy and luscious texture and heady orchid floral notes. The signature chocolate and barley flavor is more muted to balance with the subtleties of the texture. The best way to describe the sensation of drinking this tea is that of handmade butter caramels melting on your tongue.
Later steepings see a shift towards fruity raw cacao flavor, and strong Madagascar vanilla bean. The barley notes remind us of our time in a Tibetan village on a high plateau watching the barley harvest and breathing in the smell of the roasting grains over a wood fire. The aftertaste remains extraordinarily thick, like homemade whipped cream. Mr. and Mrs. He, who cultivate this incredible tea on their small farm in Laoshan Village have outdone themselves with this precious spring harvest.
Region: He family farm, Laoshan Village, Shandong
Company description not available.
Laoshan Black ( Entry Grade)Laoshan tea high-quality goods of China
Laoshan Black Genmaicha (Unofficial)Verdant Tea
Laoshan Black Chocolate GenmaichaVerdant Tea
Bergamot Rose Laoshan BlackVerdant Tea
Laoshan Black TeaLaoshan tea high-quality goods of China
Laoshan Black Tea Mellow Alpine TypeQuindao Laoshan Ling Xuan Tea
A remarkable tea for only two years in the making.
Dark chocolate and tobacco are the main notes of the large, twisted leaves in the bag. It was hard to believe how chocolatey the reviews were, but they were dead on right.
I was going to wait until autumn to order, but with a mid-May frost in the offing I was glad I didn’t. As stated by Angrboda, the steeped tea is more milky in taste, rather like a cocoa than dark chocolate, with absolutely no bitterness to it. There are vegetal/ grain/ tobacco notes to it to, giving it’s ‘nose’ great depth. I’ve recently come to the blacks after many years of greens and whites and I’m bowled over by the flavor depth here. If you’ve only experienced black tea in the bag. Fasten your seat belts and be prepared for your world to be rocked!
NOTE: I have the Autumn Laoshan Black.
I think I’ve steeped this one a bit too long. The taste was somewhat bitter, though not unpleasant. It tastes bark-ish and smells familiar, yet I cannot quite pin down exactly what familiar thing it smells like.
Will rate after a few more infusions.
Infusion 2: much more pleasant. It tastes more like an Oolong this time (to me), and is very malty. The aftertaste is, as others have said, honey-like. This is a very smooth tea.
This tea is one of the more interesting ones I’ve tried, I got it from the 5 for 5 deal on verdants site, which if you haven’t checked out you should. The first thing I tasted sipping on the first infusion was a somewhat fruity taste, which quickly gave way to the taste of grains. Altogether it almost was like drinking a fresh bowl of cereal with strawberries on top. The third infusion wasn’t as good as the first two, it tasted somewhat metallic. I think that may have been my fault as I left the leaves in my brew basket overnight. Altogether I’d say this is definitely a high quality tea, but I’m not sure if it’s one I would drink regularly. It’s surely worth trying, especially considering it comes with verdant’s amazing five teas for five dollars deal.
Throughout numerous steepings, this tea’s flavors shifted in a harmony of dark, earthy sweetness, and baked notes, cereal, and sweet potato. On the first steeping (10s), it had a robust richness: dark chocolate, cooked ripe fruits, malt syrup. The liquor had the kind of silky mouth-feel I have only experienced with certain green and oolong teas. The infusion smelled of unsweetened cocoa, cereal, and had a tart note that was not represented in the liquor.
On the second infusion (15s) the sweetness was more subdued, and the baked, cereal notes became stronger. This trend continued through additional steepings. The sweetness never left the liquor, but the richer, dark notes of sweetness became brighter. The tartness I had noted in the infusion never really asserted itself in the liquor, though aeration did bring it out—a sort of sharp caramel, citric quality vaguely similar to the aroma of demerara sugar.
The liquor from the first two or three infusions was complex, with too many nuances for me to describe. Later steepings were simpler, less dark and rich, though always playing on a balance of grain and earthy sweetness. I was able to enjoy 6 steepings before the liquor became insipid and unpleasant, which is significantly fewer than recommended by Verdant Tea, but I also started with longer steeping times. On my next attempt, I will follow their recommendations more closely.
This is a wonderful tea. The first infusion was incredibly rich and easily stands out from other Chinese black teas, such as the Golden Monkey and Bailin Gongfu, that I have been enjoying lately. I definitely look forward to trying this again.
4.2g tea (half the sample) • 90ml Gaiwan • 212°F • 6 steepings (10s, +5)
Flavors: Baked Bread, Cocoa, Coffee, Dark Chocolate, Graham Cracker, Grain, Malt, Stewed Fruits, Sweet Potatoes