Imperial Gold Bud Dian Hong

Tea type
Black Tea
Chinese Black Tea
Baked Bread, Cocoa, Honey, Malt, Wet Earth, Butter, Sweet, Yeasty, Smooth, Creamy, Dried Fruit, Pastries, Chocolate
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Loose Leaf
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Whispering Pines Tea Company
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 15 sec 10 oz / 310 ml

Available from 1 seller.

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24 Tasting Notes View all

From Whispering Pines Tea Company

About the Tea
This is the highest grade black tea that you will find outside of China. Centuries of knowledge and tea master perfection went into picking and processing this dazzling Dian Hong style balck tea! The appearance alone is enough to knock you off your feet, with golden hairs covering the velvety soft leaves!

This tea is harvested in the spring from ancient tea bushes in Yunnan, China and carries lovely complex notes of malt, cocoa, warm pinewood, honey, morel mushrooms, and a damp forest aroma. This years harvest of this fantastic tea is smoother than previous harvests, with a new pinewood note comparable to warm wet pine after a summer storm. Imperial Gold Bud Black Tea is thick and lively with a clean aftertaste and carries an intense energy (cha qi).

We are very proud to be able to offer small quantities of this rare tea and will continue to offer Imperial Gold Bud as long as mother nature allows!

Warm Pinewood
Damp Forest

How to brew the perfect cup:
Steep 1/2 tablespoon of leaves
in 8 ounces of boiling water
for 3 minutes.

2nd infusion: 5 minutes
3rd infusion: 8 minutes

Black Tea

Caffeine Content

About Whispering Pines Tea Company View company

Whispering Pines Tea Company is dedicated to bringing you the most original, pure, beautiful tea blends. We use only the highest quality ingredients available to create additive-free teas teas inspired by the pristine wilderness of Northern Michigan. Our main focus is on customer satisfaction and quality.

24 Tasting Notes

169 tasting notes

From Considering a new Travelling Tea Box

This has a beautiful golden appearance that suggests quality. The instructions said to use 1/2 tsp, but I used my standard 1.5 grams (though increased the water to 8 oz from my usual 6).

This was an amazing tea. I was initially hesitant at the Yunnan-like damp forest aroma, but there was an underlying note of cocoa, and I didn’t find it off-putting. The flavor is HUGE. I won’t use as much next time, yet the strength was wonderful: a big, complex, mouth-filling tea. The flavor changed subtly in my mouth and as the cup cooled, making it hard to identify specifics, but it retained the forest/cocoa notes in the nose. The finish was also delightful and strong. A great tea.

There is only about 5 grams left in the box, but I’m afraid I’m claiming it.

I should probably give this a 100, but I’ve always been a tough grader.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec
Whispering Pines Tea Company

Hey Doc! Glad you enjoyed this! :)

I think (unless I was totally out of it and messed up) that the instructions called for 1/2 tablespoon rather than 1/2 teaspoon. This tea also was a reserve tea but as of today has been moved up to a regular stock item, and can be found here:

The one you had and the one currently offered is a 2012 harvest. When stock runs out of the 2012 we will be replenishing each fresh harvest. :)

Glad you enjoyed this and had a good first impression of Whispering Pines!

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6 tasting notes

Another hit from Whispering Pines. This tea has depth. Honey, malty bread, cocoa and a mild earthiness. It’s very forgiving as well. I accidentally brewed the first steep for almost 5 minutes. My cup was still smooth and delicious with no signs of bitterness or astringency.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Cocoa, Honey, Malt, Wet Earth

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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354 tasting notes


I am pretty picky about my black teas. Greens, light oolongs, whites, & shengs are my first love but I’ve come to love a few blacks. I think my favourites are one with malt and chocolate notes. This one is pretty amazing with great chocolate notes. Thanks Dex for throwing this one in. So glad I got to try it.

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13 tasting notes

Deleted due to Author error.

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 15 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML
Whispering Pines Tea Company

Hmm…might you have mistaken the instructions for 1/2 teaspoon instead of 1/2 tablespoon?


Well now.. that could in fact be a problem. :) Hitting the reset button. Thanks.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Hehe :-) hope I saved the day! ;-)

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216 tasting notes

I love this type of tea and this one is really delicious. Beautiful honey-like aroma and tastes of cocoa, sweet potato and bread-like pastry. A hint peppery and so sweet, delicate and smooth. Re-steeped well. Yum!

205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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111 tasting notes

Another wonderful tea from Whispering Pines! This one has such a rich and deep aroma, like a damp mossy forest, tinged with a soft wisp of cocoa. And the taste lives up to the scent: golden smooth, with strong notes of cocoa and bread and honey. This is the kind of tea that makes me slow down and pay attention to each sip, because it’s just that good. And it keeps me coming back for multiple cups, too. I’ll have to take more detailed notes sometime, about the nuances in each steeping. For now, though, I’m just enjoying how delicious it is.

One of the best black teas that I’ve tried so far. I might not always be able to restock it, but I’ll be sad if I don’t have any around, that’s for sure!

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94 tasting notes

Delicious. Smooth, with a slight grassy flavor and a natural almost-caramel sweetness. It doesn’t really seem like black tea… more like green, but with the sweetness of a high quality black.

Update: then I steeped it too long and it definitely tasted like more normal black tea. It is MUCH better steeped correctly.

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2092 tasting notes

Another black tea from the Cameron B. pile!

I’m kind of really tired and braindead today so I’m afraid this review won’t be super detailed. In short, this was a tasty golden yunnan and I definitely enjoyed my cup of it, although it didn’t really stand out to me very strongly. A little bit of cocoa powder, some breadiness, and a hint of sweet potato. Smooth and slightly sweet. I will definitely have to compare this one more closely with the Golden Snail since they are both golden yunnans.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

Hi I read your post on Manliandao Tea Market and was wondering if you still have flashcards in Mandarin? I like greens/oolongs/whites mostly Taiwanese high altitude but wondering if you have any tips on which local Chinese teas would be good to buy (ie hard to find outside China, better value etc). Thank you!


I do still have the PDF. I’ve followed you, so you can PM me your email address and I’ll send it to you! Basically most teas you will find in the market will be very very good in comparison to what you get outside China. It was pretty astounding! My best recommendation is to wander around and do tastings and such. And always ask for a discount!

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20 tasting notes

Dry leaf aroma: Malty with a hint of yeasty sweetness.
Dry leaf appearance:

Wet leaf aroma: Malt and bread with a delicate earthy essence.
Wet leaf appearance:

Preparation: Brewed western style in a ceramic infuser mug.

First steeping: 3 minutes at 205 degrees. This tea is as much a pleasure to smell as it is to sip with its malty bread aroma. The liquor is velvety smooth with a strong freshly baked bread flavor and a subtle buttery mouth-feel. As the cup cools I detect a bit of sweetness and the aftertaste is bread with a buttery note that lingers pleasantly.

Second steeping: 5 minutes at 205 degrees. Very much like the first infusion. The buttery notes are more prominent and the mouth-feel is creamy with a yeasty aftertaste.

I wish I had time to do further steepings, as this is a tea worthy of taking your time to savor.

One thing to note, the key for me with Dian Hong is to underleaf slightly or it comes out a bit bitter. I think that has more to do with my taste buds being quirky rather than being an issue with the tea or my water. Regardless, this is an awesome tea. Lovely to look at, intoxicating to smell, and heavenly to sip!

Flavors: Baked Bread, Butter, Sweet, Yeasty

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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623 tasting notes

Got a sample of this tea from the awesome Sarsonator!
Been wanting to try it for a while but whenever I order it seems to be out of stock. :S
I love the look of this tea-it’s so different. It’s curly and soft. I never imagined I’d be so amused by how certain teas looked and felt. But different textures of teas are so unique and awesome-it just makes me smile. :P
I thought this tea was going to taste a lot like the Golden Snail, but it smells and tastes a lot more like bread than sweet potatoes.
It’s smooth with hints of honey and cocoa. But they aren’t too strong in this cup at least. Maybe in a few steeps those flavors will come out more.
Noticed that a lot of people taste malt in this tea, but I’m not really getting any malt for some reason.
So, my conclusion: A lot more bready than the Golden Snails, which I actually really like. Think I will have to get more of this myself! :O Another win by Whispering Pines! :D

Flavors: Baked Bread, Cocoa, Honey, Smooth


You can have the rest of mine. I’m so glad you like it!


Sounds really delicious.


Oh my word, really, Sarsonator? :O I’ll totally take it off your hands-wouldn’t let it go to waste! That would be awesome. Thanks!!!


Lucky you :))!! Very jelly!! Enjoy :)


Yep. I will do that for you. You know I am slow with packages, but it WILL get done :)


Yahhh!! That’s totally okay-I can wait. Ahh So excited! I really love this tea! Thanks, you’re the best!!

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