Gyokuro Black (organic)

Tea type
Black Tea
Black Tea
Caramel, Dark Chocolate, Dark Wood
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Edit tea info Last updated by partea
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 10 oz / 295 ml

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29 Tasting Notes View all

  • “OMG! OMG! OMG! Roasty tangy unsweetened nut butter-esqe Fujian amazingness! Emphasis on the roasty! Stone fruit on the end of the sip. Everything I hoped for, and more (and it’s organic!). I’m...” Read full tasting note
  • “I’m liking this a bit more this time around. It smells malty, grassy, and very much like honey. The base reminds me a bit of an Assam – maybe because of the sweetness is comparable to the fruity...” Read full tasting note
  • “Thanks to Sil for picking some of this up for me quite a while back. It’s one that I was dying to try, but that my local DT didn’t carry. I thought that 5 min would be excessive to infuse this tea,...” Read full tasting note
  • “Interesting. Darjeeling meets… Keemum? there is a distinct muscatel note, rising into an astringent note, all hanging in a keemum/hay shadow. I got three good steeps out of the bag, and my last...” Read full tasting note


Love at first sip

Take our word for it – you’re going to fall for this tea. It’s really something special. Unlike most black teas, these leaves are lightly steamed during processing – a step usually reserved for Japanese green teas like Sencha or Gyokuro. The result is so delicious, we can’t figure out why we don’t see it more often. It’s aromatic and rich yet surprisingly refreshing, with hints of ripe fruit and dark honey. Go ahead and get acquainted…we think it’s going to be love.

Ingredients: Organic black tea, slightly steamed, from Fujian Province in China.

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29 Tasting Notes

583 tasting notes

1.5 tsp for 250mL water @100C, steeped 4 minutes, drunk bare.

I notice the directions suggest 94C water; I’ll try that next time.

Rich without being heavy. Scents of honey and fruit, as the packet copy promises. Enticing and nuanced. And it seems to pack a nice caffeine hit, too. Very happy with this one.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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1220 tasting notes

Ugh I seriously lost 2-3 cups worth of loose leaf tea today by stupid accidents. The worst part being one cup worth was Main Squeeze and I REALLY liked it and now I have none. I also spilled milk all over myself right before having to leave for two classes of exams. I didn’t even finish the exam in the first class, I maybe got 65% through it. So when the second exam is just 58 multiple choice questions, I breezed through it in maybe 20 minutes and the lab instructor’s like are you sure you answered them all. Yes I’m sure. I’m also sure I only got 3 wrong MAX on that one, because the one redeeming quality of bombing a heavy math, all short answer test is knowing you can’t possibly go wrong on a multiple choice test after it.

Also I was drinking this tea while I briefly studied for that one.

This is so freakin’ awesome. I think the steaming gives it a Darjeeling-ish quality. So intriguing. It’s a bit fruity/citrusy but it’s still got that Fujian black honey/nutty/roasty qualities.

I’m sure there are people who absolutely hate this tea’s name since really there is nothing Gyokuro about this beyond it being steamed, but I’m sure it sells tea. I for one find it too tasty to care about that.

I only got about half an ounce and it’s really pricey for a black for me so I will stick with what I have and save this one for special occasions like when I really need a good pick me up!


Great review! I had the same thought about it not being gyokuro at all. They may as well have called it sencha as that is also steamed. Ah well. Stll delicious. And I found that my half ounce lasts for many a cup. Hope your exams work out okay in the end. :(

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2219 tasting notes

This reminds me of a Big Red Robe, but oversteeped. That dark dusty roasty malty earthy flavour. Sadly not a favourite of mine. So glad I only have a couple cups more to drink!


Hmmm. Maybe I should try Big REd Robe! I like this one but I might understeep it.


Silk Road’s Big Red Robe is a toned down, light-hearted cousin of Verdant’s Anxi Fo Shou. Similar flavour profiles to my untrained palate, but one is much more drinkable for me! Maybe I’ll be cheeky and make up some of each of these three teas and test them out today. I’ll have to use bags, as I only have 2 strainers.

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87 tasting notes

Oh. My. GAWD!!! YUM!

Being a HUGE fan of the Gyokuro Yamashiro (Gyokuro being one of my favourite greens) I was really wanting to try this one, but my local DTs didn’t get it in. Lucky for me, as a “congrats on being famous” gift, a lovely friend (and manager of my favourite store) gave me a generous sample of this from her own personal stash!

There’s still the freshness and buttery flavour that’s there with the green, but there’s also a nutty richness that made me melt after the first sip! The smell of the liquor reminds me of an aged oak wine barrel, with some almost grassy notes underneath to lighten it up.

I need more ASAP! This is, hands down, my favourite straight black now, actually beating Lapsang Souchong!

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134 tasting notes

Sample package label:
Unlike most black teas, these leaves are lightly steamed during processing – a step usually reserved for Japanese green teas. It’s aromatic and rich, with hints of ripe fruit and dark honey.

Organic black tea, slightly steamed from Fujian Province in China.

1.5 tsp. / 94*C 201*F / 5-7 min.
USDA Organic / Canada Organic Biologique / PAREVE”

12-oz water with total dissolved solids (TDS) of 19 ppm, heated to 212*F and allowed to cool to 201*F – verified with DAVIDsTEA digital thermometer
3 Tevanna teaspoons, without sweeteners, milk or cream.

Introduction: This is my first tasting experience with a steamed tea. I requested this tea because I like to try different teas to challenge my palate and since it was one of the highest-rated unflavored black DAVIDsTEAs per Steepster. I did not know what to expect. But, due to the 83 point rating, I was expecting an enjoyable tea.
Note: I wrote this review a few days later from hand written notes I made during the tea tasting.

This tea has a fragrance that reminds me of fine pipe tobacco.

Clear amber brown hue.

5-min Infusion: This tea had a bakery / toasted-nut aroma. The initial taste was not quite full-bodied.
6-min: OK
7-min: A little too long. Strong, brisk, astringent.

6-min: Too light
7-min: More enjoyable – woodsy character

2nd Cup:
5-min Infusion: Astringent, somewhat bitter, with the flavor of dark honey.

This cup was more enjoyable without bitterness or astringency. The dominant flavor was dark honey.

Impression: My initial experience with this steamed black tea seems to be more similar to indigobloom’s experience: After reading some of the more positive tasting notes by more experienced reviewers, I would be interested in tasting this tea again using their notes as a guide.

Many thanks to DAVIDsTEA and Natalie for providing this very generous size free sample, which was very helpful when tasting a truly different unflavored black tea for the first time.

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90 tasting notes

Beautiful. I need to introduce my Partner who is a big fan of straight black tea (even store brand orange pekoe) to this lover of a tea.

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23 tasting notes

What a fabulous tea! Big fan of gyokuro green teas, and this black tea definitely didn’t disappoint. You get all the good things from a black tea, but without any of the bitterness. Not too heavy on the tannins, great mouth feel. You don’t get the heavy vegetale taste like you do with the gyokuro green, but you get all the smoothness and high quality you would expect from those leaves, as well as just a little earthy. An all-around pleaser.

205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 30 sec

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1104 tasting notes

I was rather excited to see this in a swap :)
Comparing this to Japanes black teas kind of make it a last pick though.
Smooth, but the taste just isn’t up there for me.

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503 tasting notes

Good morning!

This was interesting, so of course I had to have it :) When I hear gyokuro I immediately think vibrant green and umami. This particular Gyokuro is completely different which intrigued me. I brewed this in my tea press before work. The steeped leaves carry a dark chocolate and brown sugar aroma. The flavor is lightly smoked and woodsy. It carries a sweet dark caramel taste. This was a nice bold morning brew, and it was a definite win for me! I usually don’t appreciate any major tea chains; I prefer more independant companies. Although, this is actually a very tasty brew, and I’m glad that I received it.

Flavors: Caramel, Dark Chocolate, Dark Wood

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

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338 tasting notes

Another stellar recommendation by an employee at my DT store. I wanted a straight black tea, and this was what I came away with. I added a splash of milk (as I generally do with any and all straight black teas) and it tasted so good. I was a little sad to see my cup come to an end, haha.

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