Tea type
Black Tea
Chinese Black Tea
Bread, Charcoal, Dried Fruit, Earthy, Malt, Meat, Savory, Smoke, Smoked, Smooth, Sweet, Thick, Wood, Campfire
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Cameron B.
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec 6 g 14 oz / 407 ml

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21 Tasting Notes View all

From Andrews & Dunham Damn Fine Tea

You might think that it’s hard for a classic tea to keep its fans wide awake and screaming for more, year after year, tour after tour. Maybe you wonder if a blend ever grows weary of trashing countertops the world over? Perhaps you think that following an exhausting after-dinner encore in Sioux City, this tea is not prepared to demolish breakfast in Wichita the next morning?

Think again.

We’re proud to welcome Carävan back into our lineup. It’s long been one of our favorite, hard-rocking teas, and now it’s bigger, bolder, and better than ever. Hold on to your biscuits and let this custom blend of strong, smoky black tea from China rock you — you won’t regret it!

Steep this tea in boiling water for four minutes, or as long as you can stand it. But please, don’t use your lighter or an open flame. Try a stovetop burner, or maybe have a friend boil it for you instead. Store at your own risk: Andrews & Dunham is not responsible for any damage to other teas in your cupboard.

About Andrews & Dunham Damn Fine Tea View company

Andrews & Dunham knows that nothing beats a perfect cup of tea, and a great tea needs no explanation. We love the romance of tea. We love that tea might just be the healthiest thing you’ll ever drink. But if the tea you’re drinking doesn’t taste fantastic, you’re missing out. Only a few teas meet our mysterious, rigorous standards and we’re proud to offer them to you. We’re always looking for that perfect cup, so you don’t have to.

21 Tasting Notes

642 tasting notes

1.25 tsp for 250mL [email protected], steeped 4 minutes, drunk bare.

Like, omigod, the tea even came with, like, a blood-dripping A&D button I can pin on my jacket!

An excellent smoky China black tea. Not quite the same as I remember — it’s missing that almost savoury /salty note — but still a more nuanced smoky tea than many. The smoke scent is strong but not smothering, while the liquor itself, a light brown with some reddish tones, is mineral and sweet and sparkling — not carbonated, obviously, but giving definite bite. Smoky notes in the finish. A very light body. I may try making this stronger tomorrow.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

I just love the little extras that Andrews & Dunham includes in their packages. It makes it so much fun.

Michelle Butler Hallett

Agreed. I almost jumped up and down when I unwrapped the buttons yesterday, especially the Caravan one, which is Carvanan-label-blue in the background, with the blood-dripping pentagram in the middle and “A” and “D” on either side. Design. I go mad for good design, not just the immediate visual punch but how A&D extend their good design into little extras and treats.

I woke up this morning thinking —I can make new tea! I can drink Assam and Caravan all day long, if I want.

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1040 tasting notes

I have a sample of this thanks to the most generous scribble – Thank you so much!!
This was my tea of choice at work today. First cup was a TOTAL MISS – ewww. I really over leafed, over steeped it. Those leaves for a second steep was really good. Added a bit more fresh leaf and did a third steep – shorter steep time. AWESOME. This tea for me is a bit fussy with steep times. I had to steep this shorter than I normally would with a black. It was just too strong with the longer steep times. Once I found where I liked it, this is really nicely balanced between bold black, astringent, and smokey. I like that the smoky isn’t totally drowning out the black flavors.
I think this is a really good example of this style of tea, but this style will never be my favorite. I would certainly like a cup here or there, but don’t think I need a 4 oz tin. Thanks so much scribbles for letting me try this.

Terri HarpLady

I enjoy a robust cup of this one!

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4843 tasting notes


Now, having tried the original Caravan and not being too crazy about it (smoky teas just don’t usually do it for me), I wasn’t going to order this resurrected version however, it came as part of the Damn Fine three-pack which was introduced before the adventure pack. And I figured at 48. it was a pretty good deal and since I’ve learned a better way to brew smoky teas so that I can drink them … I decided I’d go for it.

And I’m glad I did because now with my “new” brewing method (which isn’t all that big a secret, I simply “rinse” the leaves with hot water – brewing them for 15 seconds and then discard the liquid and then steep them as I would normally), I really enjoyed this tea.

Smoky … yes, it still is quite smoky, but I can also enjoy the other flavors tucked within this tea. Sweet and caramel-y. Deep fruity notes. A moderate astringency.

An enjoyable cuppa.

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1598 tasting notes

I must hate myself, because this isn’t the best tea to drink first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.

But it’s so good, and I want it now. :P I can always drink puerh and eat breakfast later!

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390 tasting notes

generally i consider andrews and dunham a staple: their tiger assam, their double knit— this is a company that has studied tea and knows what they’re doing.

i completely understand why this one was named ‘caravan’. i can taste the bonfire smoke and hear the nomads dancing about the flames. if you like a smoke heavy blend that is also smooth then i predict you will bond well with this tea. for my part it was a bit too much smoke, even with cream added. it was, however, very smooth.

thank you to scibbles for this tasting experience!

195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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250 tasting notes

In a moment of weakness I purchased the A&D triple pack, which I’m finally getting around to trying this weekend. I threw a teaspoon in my gaiwan and used near boiling water to steep the tea for 15-20 seconds. The foretaste is a bit strange and is dominated by the smoky flavor of the tea, but then the taste transforms into a smooth and mildly sweet flavor before trailing off into a lightly mineral aftertaste. The problem with this tea is that I find myself comparing it against Zheng Shan Xaio Zhong, which is hardly fair because this tea is above average. That, and nothing smoked is really in the same galaxy as Zheng Shan Xaio Zhong. Oh well, it will still be interesting to see how the tea develops.

Second cup was made with the same parameters as the first, but the taste is much different. The tea isn’t quite as sweet, allowing the smokey flavor to assert itself a bit more.Another change is that the texture of the tea has gone from a bit creamy to a nice solid mineral-ish sensation. Both of these changes actually improve the flavor of the tea, and I can’t wait to see what the next development will be.

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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286 tasting notes

I. Love. This. Tea.

I love the smoky flavour of this tea. The smokiness is not overwhelming, just enough to evoke awesome memories of the great outdoors and white water rafting.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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2725 tasting notes

So a couple of weeks ago, I somehow found myself on the Andrews & Dunham website. I don’t recall how, maybe I saw something on Steepster that made me curious to see what teas they had in stock. Regardless, I found this tea in stock and promptly ordered a tin. I have four of their other teas and they’re always enjoyable, if slightly neglected in my cupboard. I then promptly forgot about the purchase.

So fast forward to two days ago, this tea showed up at my doorstep and ooh, what a lovely surprise gift from my (slightly) past self! XD

I admit, I was slightly nervous when I smelled the dry leaf, as the smoke dominates the aroma. I don’t dislike smoked teas, in fact I often quite enjoy them, but it’s not something I drink often, and sometimes I do find them a bit too smoky. But I needn’t have worried, this is very well-balanced. The smokiness is obvious, but it’s not the only thing I taste, and it has a lovely savory meaty flavor as opposed to a charred or ashy one. Underneath is a lovely sweetness, an earthy woodiness, and also a satisfyingly chewy bread note. Perhaps a touch of dark dried fruit as well?

Very yummy, and I certainly don’t regret ordering it on a whim. I haven’t been disappointed by A&D yet! :)

Flavors: Bread, Charcoal, Dried Fruit, Earthy, Malt, Meat, Savory, Smoke, Smoked, Smooth, Sweet, Thick, Wood

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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1734 tasting notes

I’ll be honest, I had such high hopes for this one that my first cup was pretty underwhelming. The description says things like bigger, bolder, strong, smoky, store at your own risk, not responsible for any damage to other teas in your cupboard. I was expecting the smoky aroma to hit me square in the face as soon as I opened the tin. It didn’t. The steeped cup was even more disappointing. Not only was it only very lightly smoked, but the tea itself didn’t seem to have much flavor. It wasn’t bold or strong at all. It tasted a bit watered down even. I’m going to hold my rating on this for now because I can’t help but think I must have steeped it wrong.

Flavors: Smoke

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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81 tasting notes

In the past, I had always steered away from this tea bc I’m….not a fan, usually, of smoky teas. or at least I wasn’t, this past year year though? give me all the smoky teas. also, give me all of the dianhongs. so, I was surprised (and excited) when A&D finally had some teas in stock and jumped and bought their custom set and uh. I love this. I was worried about too much smoke, but this is perfect.

plus, the lil guitar pick that came with it? perfect.

the 7th tea of Christmas is also exciting, but I was in need of something stronger this morning. I’m ready to go home and try it.

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