Breathing in the dry leaf yields some differences from the Reserve. There’s the predominating aroma of cocoa, of course, but there’s an underlying sourness that reminds me of very dark brown honey wheat bread. There’s something yeasty about the smell.
This aroma is reflected in the brew, as it has a bready chocolate scent.
The first steep definitely yields a less-sweet flavor, more like a gassy, yeasty dark bread with hardly any chocolate. This changes in subsequent steeps to a chocolate honey bread. Perhaps if they made a pain au chocolat out of a dark wheat flour and drizzled a bit of honey on top, that is what this would taste like.
Stephen, my non-tea-drinking husband, took a sip and proclaimed that it tasted like a dark chocolate beer, so we’re pretty close in agreement.
Post and pictures here: http://www.catlaittea.com/2016/08/28/review-verdant-tea-2016-laoshan-and-reserve-laoshan-black/
Flavors: Baked Bread, Cocoa, Honey, Yeast