I really enjoy this tea in the morning! The dry leaf consists of black tendrils spotted with gold. These twisted leaves carry a lovely fragrance of malt, dried cherries, and some chocolate powder. I grabbed a good sized amount and stuffed the warmed ruyao teapot. The warmed leaves open up and give off a strong sense of dark bitter sweet chocolate, some syrupy notes, and a dark woody undertone. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The brew begins light caramel colored and slowly becomes darker. The steeped leaves give a strong and robust scent of mahogany, dark cacao, and burnt sugar. The taste is fantastic. This drink begins with a smooth sweet sugar cane that covers a tangy and wood flavor. The brew gives off a brief sense of astringency and tannin with each sip. As the session progresses, the flavors become deeper and consists of heavier wood flavors mixed with malt. The reason I love this in the mornings is that it gives a wonderful qi pick-me-up feeling. I experience a soothing warming feeling with an eye opening sensation. I also note some neck prickling and hair rising affects. I really enjoy this tea; however, I’m not a big fan of the later steeping. I usually carry this brew up to about four maybe five steep sessions, and then I leave for the day. This is a great value tea to throw into the teapot!
Flavors: Burnt Sugar, Cacao, Cherry, Dark Chocolate, Dark Wood, Malt, Wood