Yu Lu Yan Cha Black

Tea type
Black Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Baked Bread, Cocoa, Dill, Grain, Honeysuckle, Roasted, Rye, Sweet, Chocolate, Flowers, Honey, Muscatel, Smooth, Spices, Sweet Potatoes, Malt
Sold in
Not available
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by CharlotteZero
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 45 sec 5 g 16 oz / 461 ml

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159 Tasting Notes View all

From Verdant Tea

This incredible, limited offering tea has never before been tasted in China or the west. Our most trusted pu’er advisor, Wang Yanxin, knows that we like unique teas, and has an outstanding offer from us to finance any experimental projects that she wants to spearhead in the world of pu’er. Her first experiment has yielded a completely new kind of black tea that we think combines the best chocolatey notes of Laoshan Black with the crisp texture and honey aftertaste of Jin Jun Mei.

Wang Yanxin has a good farmer friend in Xinyang village, famous for its Xinyang Maojian green tea. Her friend was lamenting to her this autumn that her family would not have enough tea to sell this year. Xinyang Maojian uses buds only, and the spring season didn’t yield as many buds as usual. They picked plenty of bud and leaf clumps, and fresh young leaves, but had no incentive to process them as a green tea. Wang Yanxin had the idea of crafting a black tea. She bought the entire remainder of her friend’s harvest to help them out, ensuring that they have enough money to invest for next year’s crop.

Next, she had the fresh leaves air-shipped to her shop in Qingdao, and took them up to Laoshan. In Laoshan village, she and her friends started experimenting with roasting. They lost a lot of the crop before they got it just perfect, but eventually, this hand roasted black tea from Wang Yanxin found the perfect balance of chocolate notes, honey, and a perfect smoothness. Closest to a Jin Jun Mei in profile, this tea is great cause for excitement, showing that the world of tea is still young with room for innovation everywhere.

The name Yu Lu Yan Cha Black comes from the ancient names of Henan and Shandong province. Yu is Henan, and Lu is Hsandong. To commemorate this landmark cooperative tea producing effort, Yu Lu is added to the tea name. Yan is the first part of Wang Yanxin’s name to honor her innovation in creating this new tea.

We are pleased to offer the 20 pounds of this harvest that Wang Yanxin perfected, and pleased to finance the experiment through buying up the results. If this tea is enjoyed as much as we enjoyed tasted it with Wang Yanxin, then we will surely convince her to partner with her friend in Henan for a spring harvest.

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159 Tasting Notes

94
464 tasting notes

I’m sitting here waiting for my peach raspberry pie to finish baking and drinking this tea in anticiation of the sweet yumminess awaiting me. I also had homemade chicken pot pie for lunch It’s a pie kind of day!

I dumped the rest of my sample packet in the steeper for this cup. It is extra malty and earthy. I want to describe this as roasted chocolate mushrooms with citrus, but I really doubt that sounds appealing to anyone and I wouldn’t want to deter anyone from this yummy tea.

JustJames

nope, that’s a great description!! maybe truffle mushroom versus the regular fry up kind? i swear verdant cheated and dumped hot chocolate mix in with this tea! i haven’t had a chance to do my review…. (guilt guilt).

ifjuly

I’m weird maybe and that sounds awesome! (:

ifjuly

And yay for double-pie season!

Fuzzy_Peachkin

Lol! I’m glad the description sounds accurate to someone! And Autumn makes me go crazy with the baking!

teamore Did you make the chicken potpie too?
Fuzzy_Peachkin

Yep! It’s involves a ton of prepwork, but it’s so worth it! :-)

Bonnie

No no…French fries and chocolate milk shake!

Fuzzy_Peachkin

Interesting! I didn’t get any potato notes at all. Hmmmmm…..

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361 tasting notes

Backlog from yesterday:

You know how you don’t notice a flavor until you taste it strongly in something and you don’t like it much and then you notice it other things and you don’t like them as much either? Stay with me… I purchased a sample of this a while back and loved it so I ordered some more with my last order. Then I tried golden fleece. I didn’t like it as it had a sweet potato/mushroom thing going on. So then I tried this one again yesterday and was quite bummed to taste those same notes in this. I didn’t taste them the first time around as they are very subtle, but now that I can identify those flavors, I taste them and just don’t like this as much. Bummer. Still a decent cup but I’m not as excited by it.

Bonnie

How are you brewing it? I prefer this western style with plenty of leaf (I’ve been known to add cream…ugh..coco French fries).

TastyBrew

I did it western style as well. I’ll add more leaf next time. I loved your review of the laoshan roasted oolong. I just ordered some!

Bonnie

Thanks…it’s lighter and more reminiscent of Laoshan Black (the oolong I mean). I find that that many of these tea’s need time. When I rush…the flavor seems muddled. Maybe I’m just an old woman, but this is what the tea requires of me.

Angrboda

Yes, I know what you mean. I had bought a salad for lunch a few weeks ago which tasted like it consisted of little else than coriander. Now I suddenly just don’t like fresh coriander anymore.

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95
171 tasting notes

Similar to laoshan black with a dark chocolate, roasty aroma, but there is also a more earthy note and a hint of smokiness to this one.
Flavor is chocolate, malt, sweet potato, honey, some floral and a bit of mushroom earthiness. Second steep becomes stronger in honey aroma and tastes sweeter and creamier.
This is so good!! It is similar to the laoshan black, but in a lighter, less toasty way, and has more of the earthy potato notes with honey that I love. Both are delicious and I’m not sure I could pick a favorite.. but perhaps it would be this one simply because I happen to be drinking it right now. Love it!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 30 sec
Courtney

I wish the smokiness wasn’t there, that was the only thing preventing me from loving this one. At least I have LB. :)

caile

That’s too bad, but at least the LB is always a great tea to have!

Sil

Stranger still, the last two times I’ve had this there’s been no smoke…. So it seems to be bouncing back and forth for me…

caile

haha It’s such a light hint so maybe that’s why? It was more so in the first infusion if I recall…and either way, is such a tasty tea! Perfect for huffalumps as well, I heard. ;-)

Sil

haha hefflumps love smokey teas. it’s true :)

caile

I knew it! :)

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74
523 tasting notes

Got this as a sample with my Verdant order and I am sooooo happy to have it.

This is an absolutely wonderful tea. Sweet, mildly smoky, thick and malty. Unsweetened cocoa-y, not a hint of bitterness, dryness or astringency. Second steep was a bit harsher and not as smooth with more hay/grass quality and more smoke coming to the fore. Not a particularly good smoke, though.

While I much prefer the first steep, the second grew on me. I definitely prefer this to the Laoshan Black.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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92
374 tasting notes

I have to tell you sometimes I am more excited about the samples I’m getting from Verdant than the tea I actually ordered. I say this because ever time I’ve ordered the samples have been spot on to my taste in tea even if they were way off base from what I ordered!

This time around this tea was included with my order of Golden Fleece. Is it as good as Golden Fleece? Not in my opinion, but it’s up there on my list of top favorites from Verdant.The dry leaf hints at malt and chocolate for me. I have to tell ya, I am a sucker for a malty tea. Always have, always will be. As it steeps there’s still that malty smell with a slight hint of honey. Mmmm honey.

The taste? Again the malty flavor is right there in my face but I do get some passing tastes of chocolate and honey. This gets an a in my book. A sample size of it MAY have also fallen into my cart too. I like it, but it isn’t a tea I have to have in the house all the time. At least not in large quantities.

CHAroma

I love Verdant teas! But they’re just so expensive, it’s hard rationalizing it to the fiance.

The Purrfect Cup

Agreed! Thankfully my MIL gave me a gift card for Christmas….hello tea money! I’m also glad that Verdant offers a lot of their tea in 2.00 sample sizes. I hate buying a large amount of something and hating it, then being stuck with it!

CHAroma

Yeah, samples are for the win! And grats on the gift card! I’ll pretend not to be jealous…grumble grumble. LOL!

Sil

mmmm looking forward to this one. I too, love a nice malty black.

The Purrfect Cup

Ha thanks! It’s not a huge gift card, but it bought me some samples from Verdant. I might have enough to get something from Upton. Sigh why can’t I just win lotto! LOL!

The Purrfect Cup

@Sil, I’m being so sparing with the tea from our swap you sent! I’m in love with it!

Sil

Well if you can’t make it up in February ill send you more :)

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89
171 tasting notes

Spending the day with this, comforting my dog. He looks like we may have a bit more time after all. I didn’t drink or eat anything yesterday, but with our spirits up, I picked this one to enjoy.

TheTeaFairy

sending good thoughts your way :-)

BoxerMama

Thank you! He has cardiomyopathy, so it’s only a matter of time. We just want his time here to be of quality.

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325 tasting notes

Well, I’m back from my long trip to Japan — where I didn’t drink nearly as much tea as you might think. Meals in Tokyo are pretty Westernized, it turns out, even when having fairly traditional foods. I had to ask for tea almost everywhere we went, and with the exception of one conveyor sushi bar and one soba shop, none of it was at all remarkable. But, I did drink a lot of matcha in Liz’s apartment trying to keep warm.

I was unable to read steepster while I was away, so if something important happened to you I should know about and missed, please get in touch.

So here I am back in Houston where we’ve been having some unusually cold weather (for Houston) and so I have tea in my hand pretty much any time I’m awake.

This experimental option from Verdant has been a lot of fun, so far. I’m on my second day of gongfu steeping sessions and enjoying the leaf very much.

Somewhere between the rich, chocolate extravagance of Laoshan black and the pleasant bite of Wuyi oolong, this tea has a complex flavor profile and a thick, full mouth feel.

Even early steepings don’t come off as dark you expect them to, given the look of the dry and wet leaf (and the enormous aroma they offer), but that is not to say what you find in your cup is either thin or subtle. The chocolate and malt definitely dominate the cup, but there is more to the picture, here. Unsalted cashews. Orange zest. Buckwheat honey.

This is a cold, rainy day tea if ever there was one.

This is a crisp, sunny Winter day tea if ever there was one.

But I also suspect it would be fabulous as an iced tea in the Summer’s heat.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec
Hesper June

Welcome home!

Bonnie

Glad you are well! Your tea stash is happy too!

Steven

Where have you been in Japan? I went there many times for work, and really enjoyed it. I have a couple of favorite conveyor sushi places (kaiten-zushi) in Shibuya I always go to while I’m there.

Jim Marks

Liz is living in Tokyo and my visit at this time didn’t allow (budget wise) for travel outside the city (transit is crushingly expensive, there). She’s a vegetarian, so we didn’t do a lot of sushi, but we did hit one of the two kaiten in her neighborhood and also a nice proper sushi bar in Akiba.

My favorite meal by far was the nabe we had in Koenji. And there’s a fantastic bar in Koenji that is my favorite bar on earth.

Steven

I know right? I’m glad I wasn’t paying for my transportation.

What’s nice about the food in Japan is no matter what price you pay, it’s always good and well presented.

I’m glad you had a good time. I can’t wait to go back.

ashmanra

Welcome back! We look forward to some tasting notes and more anecdotes!

LadyLondonderry

Welcome back, Jim! Good to read about your tea adventures at home as well as abroad!

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689 tasting notes

I was really hoping Fjellrev would maybe be wrong, or more sensitive to smoke than I, but alas, I could taste it. This tea is not for me. Sigh.

On the upside though, I see another order may be delivered today. Yes!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
Sil

Glad i’m not insane. this was NOT a smokey tea originally…but the batch i had the other day for SURE had smokiness to it.

I mean, i’m ok with that and love it..but it’s a totally different tasting tea than the first time i remember having it.

Courtney

Pout. I was so looking forward to the “sweet potato” flavour.

Stephanie

Bummer! It sounds theoretically awesome…

Sil

yeah…i’ll need to try this again on the weekend but i remember thinking woah..this is like a tasty keemun!

Stephanie

The only thing I’ve ever gotten sweet potato flavor from was the Golden Fleece…mmmm

Terri HarpLady

I haven’t tried this lately, but I think Verdant may have included a sample in my last order, so we’ll see.

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300 tasting notes

This post is for science (and Kittenna) comparing some of Verdant’s black teas I felt were similar but knew would be different, this isn’t side by side but one after the other. I had this tea over a month ago but it seems I did not log it. I don’t think I knew what to say then.

As leaves hit the hot mug, the unmistakable smell of chocolate permeates the air. Yet when hot water hit leaves the smell turned savory. There is something much more grainy than yesterday’s Anxi Fo Shou Black or Laoshan Black a prickly bit of linen, no, denser like a wool cloak.

This second steep is so savory and buttery with sweetness only in the finish. It’s sparkle is different than the wuyi sparkle, but still it tingles in a more earthy manner. There is veg here, avocado which is of course a tree fruit but it has a very veg quality.

Thick heavy savory honey in the third steep, almost raw. I keep using all these rough adjectives and yet it is really a very smooth black tea but there is no doubt it is thick, thick and malty.

This tea conjures up hearty starchy things like legumes and potatoes and makes me want chili or stew but with a bit of molé. Wow so different than yesterday’s rum raisin chocolate cake and it sets itself apart from Laoshan Black as well. I stand very corrected.

Edit to add: I continued steeping this on late last night and by around the 9th infusion or so (I lost count) it turned very chocolaty, very very sweet and even fruity, at that point I had lowered my temp to 205-208F and dragged the infusions out to a minute plus. Only by one in the morning was this feeling at all watered down.

Also watched Mirror Mirror on Netflix and preferred it overall to Snow White and the Huntsman (though Charlize was an awesome queen and had gorgeous raven inspired wardrobe and I liked the Irish tree named dwarves, Lily Collins made a much better Snow White and the prince was funny), completely different tone, very amusing if over the top.

Sil

awesome!

Kittenna

Nice! I will have to read all your notes again before I sample my teas a second time as well.

Also, I liked Mirror Mirror (though Snow White’s eyebrows really threw both the bf and myself!). I particularly cracked up at the “no kissy” face the prince made… my boyfriend has done something akin to that to me once or twice in fun, and it reminded me so much of him :P

Autumn Hearth

;) I know what you mean about the eyebrows, I just had to tell myself that there will probably never be a perfect Snow White in my eyes (though I really liked Kristen Kreuk in the 2001 Hallmark version and enjoy Once Upon A Time), but at the same time she shouldn’t have to measure up to conventional beauty standards, she is the fairest not the most gorgeous, sex or unearthly beautiful and I think her radiant innocence plays into that at least her skin and hair were more contrasted than Kristen Stewart and she freaking smiled. Sorry to ramble and rant.

I still have Laoshan black, Zu Rhong and Jin Hun Mei to redrink and then Master Han’s Wild Picked Yunnan Black to open, will prob end with Golden Fleece, though I’m not really comparing it to the other blacks, maybe a bit to the two Yunnan/Wild Picked teas but the light buddy teas are a whole different beast than the dark chocolatey ones, though David mentioned Jin Jun Mei when talking about the honey notes of Yu Lu Cha so yeah and I need an excuse to make progress on my tea samples.

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80
499 tasting notes

Planning to move in and out of places can be so stressful. What do people normally do with their furniture during that one evening of contract limbo? I guess there’s no point in worrying over it today until I’ve heard back from everyone, but it’s hard for me.

It’s a while since I’ve had a black tea from Verdant, and this sample has spent most of its time lying around in a box since February. If there was a number to report tea abuse to..

I find it pays off to drink this stuff when I want calm, whether I’m already relaxed or a bag of nerves, like right now. It’s hard to be uptight when you’re drinking boiled leaves that taste like chocolate honey malt waffles. There’s more honey and cinnamon in this than anything else right now. Yeah, life is good.

Preparation
Boiling
OMGsrsly

The last place I moved out of, my roommate didn’t want to leave at the same time as me so I paid an extra half months rent to offset her costs. When we moved in there, it was empty and they let us move our junk in a couple days early (Oct 30!). I’ve been very fortunate.

Tea Sipper

I hope your move goes as smoothly as possible!

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