Laoshan Black

Tea type
Black Tea
Black Tea Leaves
Apricot, Cherry, Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, Malt, Nuts, Nutty, Oats, Peach, Cocoa, Vanilla, Broth, Fruity, Roasted Barley, Tea, Brown Toast, Roasted nuts, Sweet, Brown Sugar, Burnt Sugar, Molasses, Roasted, Wood, Caramel, Honey, Earth, Licorice, Peat, Plums, Dark Bittersweet, Butter, Toast, Wheat, Dried Fruit, Stonefruits, Rose, White Grapes, Coffee, Graham Cracker, Grain, Raisins, Rum, Salt, Smoke, Graham, Oak wood, Cacao, Stewed Fruits, Cream, Black Currant, Baked Bread, Sweet Potatoes, Toasted, Cinnamon, Dill, Chestnut, Burnt, Toasty, Cannabis, Hops, Coconut, Creamy, Marshmallow, Toasted Rice, Soybean, Butterscotch, Custard, Walnut, Smooth
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Loose Leaf
Not available
Fair Trade, Organic
Edit tea info Last updated by Patrick Berkeley
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec 5 g 12 oz / 348 ml

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858 Tasting Notes View all

From Verdant Tea

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

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858 Tasting Notes

25 tasting notes

I love when I find a tea that is unique and different, and this one certainly fits that description. My first impression is that of burnt sugar/caramel. The liquor is a beautiful light golden brown color. The aroma is like a huge wave of burnt caramel and chocolate hitting all of your senses. The taste is a more balanced version of the aroma. There is robust flavors of burnt caramel, dark chocolate, honey, and some generic fruit flavors. As I moved on to my second and third infusions, the burnt flavors became more pronounced while the fruit and sweetness of the first steep lessened. Nevertheless, as the flavors shifted, the complex profile of the tea was maintained. Certain flavors were just highlighted more than others.

Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Caramel, Chocolate, Honey

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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9 tasting notes

A beautiful and storied black tea. While other teas can be like sitting in a restaurant with all their noise and flavor, this tea was like that and everything but silent and as one.

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46 tasting notes

Funny, I thought I’d already reviewed this tea but apparently I didn’t. Well, Laoshan Black is one of my overall favorites so far. I got it in a sampler set from Verdant and then placed another order just so I could get more of it. It’s complex, smooth, and pleasantly flavored. As you can see from all the flavor notes suggested by other people, it certainly has a lot of different layers. One of my favorite things about it, though, is that it actually does taste like chocolate (among, as I said, many other things). It always makes me sad when a description says chocolate and then I can’t find any chocolate notes in the tea itself. Anyway, in addition to chocolate, today I’m getting some malty notes and maybe some roasted chicory flavor . . . et cetera.

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7 tasting notes

There’s a distinct chocolate smell and flavor, followed by caramel. Yet at the same time, it’s mildly earthy in flavor. A very enjoyable tea.

Flavors: Caramel, Chocolate, Earth, Licorice, Peat

190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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1 tasting notes

I never thought black tea could be so amazingly sweet and complex! This was Verdant’s Autumn Harvest Laoshan Black.

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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14 tasting notes

Brewed gong-fu with near boiling and later tried with 190 F. Small, nicely rolled leaves. Strong barley flavor- really the main flavor to me. Having been a homebrewer in the past, this tastes remarkably similar to wort (roasted barley “tea”, beer before fermentation or hops). I also get some plum and other dark fruit flavors but this tea is pretty one-dimensional for me. I much prefer the laoshan green, and would not seek out this black again.

Flavors: Plums, Roasted Barley

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424 tasting notes

I have two big tea orders coming my way, so time to sip down my sample pile and make room! This was my breakfast tea of choice today. The leaf is pretty: small, dark, tightly-curled leaves. It brews up to a clear reddish-brown with a warm, malty scent. I often add milk to straight black tea, but this one is lovely all by itself: smooth and flavorful with notes of malt, plum, and dark cocoa. No bitterness or astringency even after a 4-minute steep. Delicious!

Flavors: Cocoa, Dark Bittersweet, Malt, Plums

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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368 tasting notes

I’ve had this tea many, many, many, many times.

We call it “chocolate tea”.

Today I’m getting overwhelming notes of heavily buttered, fresh, hot, honey whole wheat toast. Real talk.

Flavors: Butter, Honey, Toast, Wheat

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 10 g 12 OZ / 350 ML

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291 tasting notes

These curly little black leaves are gorgeous. After putting them into a preheated yixing pot, they have a very malty aroma and smell heavily of oats and dark chocolate, also raisins. The aroma of the wet leaves is very complex, earthy… somewhere between tobacco, prunes, dark chocolate, wood ashes, and a cellar.

The first infusion is incredibly mellow and sweet. The sweetness really lingers, with notes of stone fruits and cocoa and a rich bready background like sweetened porridge or oatmeal. There are hints of malt and dark chocolate in the finish. The repeat infusions have been less sweet and a little more cocoa tasting, but overall it is still a rather nice tea. That first infusion really impressed me, and I thought immediately I’d have to buy some, but the repeat infusions were more dark and bittersweet and not as smooth as I tend to go for, so I will have to think on it!

Flavors: Chocolate, Dried Fruit, Malt, Stonefruits, Sweet

195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 6 OZ / 170 ML

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622 tasting notes

This is a great, solid black. It is semi sweet, a bit bready and cocoa-y, but has a floral component as well. Uncomplicated and tasty!

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