I never thought black tea could be so amazingly sweet and complex! This was Verdant’s Autumn Harvest Laoshan Black.
“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...” 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,...” 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...” 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...” 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 Gongfu BlackVerdant Tea
Laoshan Black ( Entry Grade)Laoshan tea high-quality goods of China
Laoshan Black Genmaicha (Unofficial)Verdant Tea
Laoshan Black Chocolate GenmaichaVerdant Tea
Spring Harvest Laoshan BlackVerdant Tea
Reserve Spring Laoshan BlackVerdant Tea
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
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
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
I received this as a sample once upon a time. The smell is mostly amazing, with a little bit of a funk going on—it doesn’t come through in the flavor (at least, after the first sip) so that’s a relief! By funk, I suppose I mean a sort of burnt, wet, mud going on. Maybe my glass teapot needs cleaned? Hrmph. That’s probably it.
The first steep I did was only for a few seconds (like, thirty). I usually don’t do shorter steeps, so I was surprised at how strong the tea was after only a quick dip. It’s smooth and malty and fantastic.
The second steep was my usual length—a couple minutes. It’s not bitter at all, which makes me very happy. Another fantastic tea from Verdant—if they can make me fall in love with Wulong, then it only make sense that I feel the need to rave endlessly about their other teas. What a perfect end to a cold day in the bitter freezer! I’ll just curl up right here with my journal, and my books, my tea cup, and my cat, and my fuzzy slippers… take that hypothermia!
I already have quite the selection of loose leaf plain black teas (thanks to Verdant, actually), so I will have to put this in the running for when I need more.
This tea should probably be the number one tea on steepster.com
It even LOOKS good. The prices got better somehow and it is so milky and sweet and carmelly. Please, try to find something better in this category.
Wait, is it number 1 on here? haha, I shouldve checked. Anyway, its great. Cant really ruin it, went boiling water and left it for about 3 minutes, poured a big pot and went and sat outside…what more do you want?
The first steep was amazing, resulting in a pale brown brew with a thick smell of malt and cocoa powder. Cocoa city! I can sense some of the butter/grain notes of the green tea, but the flavour deepened here and became much more savoury.
The second steep was similarly malty, with an underlying bitter bite that reminded me of cocoa nibs. However, it was very smooth, with no astringency.
The third steep was very mild, and the wet leaf by now had an underlying note of raisin, which made me think of raisin bread. The tea was by now quite pale for a black tea, but still soft, savoury and delicious. I can see why people on Steepster like Laoshan black so much by now!
Full review at: http://booksandtea.ca/2015/10/verdant-teas-5-for-5-sample-pack/