China Breakfast

Tea type
Black Tea
Organic Black Tea
Chocolate, Cream, Leather, Malt, Molasses, Sweet Potatoes, Toast, Toffee, Fruity, Floral
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Loose Leaf
Edit tea info Last updated by Teatotaler
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 15 sec 3 g 9 oz / 256 ml

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From Rishi Tea

Our signature breakfast tea is a tippy Dian Hong growing between 1,600 – 1,800 meters in elevation at the densely forested Wa Shan Ecological Tea Garden in Yunnan. Breakfast is beloved for its mellow character and hints of sweet caramel and raisin. Milder than English Breakfast, this tea presents a deep red infusion that is smooth enough to enjoy on its own or exquisite with milk and honey.

Tasting Notes: A full-bodied and smooth breakfast blend with hints of sweet caramel and spice

Ingredients: Organic black tea.

Additional Info: Classic black teas offer a timeless taste of tea’s rich history and express a distinct sense of place, determined not only by geography and climate, but also by culture and tradition.

This tea comes to us from the Wa Shan Ecological Tea Garden in Yunnan, China. Explore the tea and landscapes of Wa Shan in Rishi’s Travelogue.

Water Temperature: 200°F
Leaf to Water Ratio: 1 tablespoon per 8 ounces
Steep Time: 4 minutes (1st infusion), 5 minutes (2nd infusion)

We encourage you to experiment with the quantity of tea leaves and the length of the steep time to find your desired brew strength. Varying the water temperature isn’t recommended, as water that is too hot will over-extract the bitter components of tea, while water that is too cool might not fully draw out the aromas and flavors of tea.

About Rishi Tea View company

Rishi Tea specializes in sourcing the most rarefied teas and botanical ingredients from exotic origins around the globe. This forms a palette from which we craft original blends inspired by equal parts ancient herbal wisdom and modern culinary innovation. Discover new tastes and join us on our journey to leave ‘No Leaf Unturned’.

69 Tasting Notes

1220 tasting notes

Ugh FINALLY I can write this note…Steepster was down, then I was stuck in traffic getting things done. I don’t get why everyone felt the need to leave early for trick or treating, like calm down. This guy in a convertible beetle was just letting people in everywhere, specifically people who would get a light to turn, holding up the lane. At the highway, I got in the lane he wasn’t in, and could then see he was on his phone. I made sure to get him behind me, after all I was in the left lane and the right had to merge in.

Well, he didn’t like that, apparently I was supposed to let his entitled rear end in, so he honked at me. So I mimed crying at him. Needless to say he didn’t like that LOL so after he flipped me off I did the hang up one complete with flipping him off right back. He had no response to that of course, but since he added at least a good 5+ minutes of time onto people’s drives behind me who got stuck at the light changing for nobody, I felt like I made it up for them. Mostly at first I just had a problem with him driving a convertible new beetle, but then when I saw he was on his phone, just no.


I had a problem steeping it at first, mostly because the instructions say to use a tablespoon per 8 oz of water. I think it ended up steeping for about 4 1/2 minutes, and I added milk…but it was disgustingly bitter. I had added the milk worried this was going to happen but it didn’t cut it at all. And it was horrible, because up on the platform it was so windy and I hated the tea so much I would rather shiver than try drinking it for warmth.

I didn’t try it again for an hour or so after it’d been sitting in my thermos, and it was much better then. It is very stout, it actually feels like I am drinking the beer version of it right now, a black saison. (Actually I don’t really care for it and I’d rather drink this tea again.) It’s kind of roasty/malty with cocoa powder with a hint of spices. Not much sweetness, which is why I didn’t like it at first, but either it cooling off or the milk being in there a bit helped to soften that.

Next time I think I am going to cut the leaf by at least 1/4 and steep it for only 3 1/2 minutes. I’d like to be able to enjoy it without adding anything to it.

Also since I’m probably going to be making lip balm all night for a fall festival on Saturday (just at a nearby school, nothing big but hopefully it pans out well!) HAPPY HALLOWEEN! here is a cat afraid of a kitten:


Yeah I don’t understand Rishis instructions on this one. I like mine just fine by one teaspoon per cup. They must be crazies over there lol


It’s awesome how you can see the sheer terror in the cat’s eyes. That kitten must be bad-ass lol

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412 tasting notes

Has it really been two years since I logged this? That’s ridiculous, because I drink it nearly every day. My last order from Rishi included a full pound of China Breakfast. I drink it strong (heaping teaspoon to 8oz water) with milk and no sugar.

It’s malty and smoky and chocolatey and rich, and has been my standard morning tea over the last few months. I’m almost through that pound, and tempted to order another, but I’m going to try branching out again for awhile instead. Samples from TeaVivre arriving soon!

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 15 sec

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1112 tasting notes

So today I feel like I’ve been hit by one of those SUV minivans that seat 8 instead of a bus – I guess that’s an improvement. I still did not hear my alarm but only got up 1 hour late. I thankfully made it to work on time. Ooooh my body hates daylight savings time!!!!

I also remembered my lunch today, which means that I have half and half :)

I am really enjoying this once again. Bold and raisiny. Wholesomely sweet and very satisfying. I am drinking my cup at an alarmingly fast rate!!! That means I love, love, love it! I am really enamored of that raisin molasses taste that is very unique to the Chinese black teas like this one and Panyang Congu.

EDIT: So much for being more together today – I just went into the restroom to wash my teapot and discovered half the buttons on my shirt are unbuttoned!!! OMG!

Boiling 4 min, 30 sec
the quiet life

Daylight Savings Time is EVIL. We were all walking around Borders like zombies yesterday. But yay for tea! :D (And I totally feel your pain on the shirt thing. My seatbelt sometimes likes to undo mine. So embarrassing! :( )


The tea sounds wonderful and your shirt? Probably everybody though you were stylin’!!!


the edit made me laugh. :) this morning was not any better than yesterday for me either.


Dude! Why is this week conspiring against all of us? Though I will admit that the shirt note made me giggle.


Blah, Daylight Savings Time is teh evil – maybe I should move to Saskatchewan (where they don’t have a time change).

As for the shirt, lol. So long as any nipples weren’t showing it wouldn’t be anything the so-called fashionistas haven’t done. ;)


Oh, I can identify. I hope that today is going better. I love your tasting notes!


Doulton – today I actually heard my alarm but it took me fifteen minutes to move after hearing it! I am still really out of it and I sat on the armrest on the train which lifted my skirt up! Thankfully we are still in opaque tights weather and no one got a huge show. Clearly, the government instituted daylight savings time in a plot to see me naked.


Okay, that last line had me laughing. You win first laugh of the day and I had to send that out on twitter.


takgoti – :) :) :)


Ahhh, it’s great that guys don’t have to worry about this stuff ;)

Poor Jacqueline, today’s just not your day.


@Ricky: No but you do have to worry about whether or not you forgot to do your fly up after taking a leak. ;P

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429 tasting notes

This tea is beginning to be the one I reach for in the morning. Rich, bold, brisk and delicious, I really like this yunnan tea.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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161 tasting notes

I finally got the right mix on this one. I think it has a 5 minute max steep time. Anything over 5 minutes (at least on the 1st steep) will yield some crazy bitterness. Taken with milk and a teensy bit of sugar, this ended up being a really nice cup of tea. I wasn’t blown away like I thought I would be, considering this is a 2009 award winning tea. But, it’s good.

I’ll tell ya what DID make this tea better. Dunking in a tea cake cookie. Since my husband’s knee surgery, he has taken up baking to avoid extreme boredom while he is off work. I highly support his baking hobby…both because the holiday goodies are made AND given out…and as it turns out, he is a VERY good at it! Yay for hidden talents.

Off to make another cup…and grab another tea cake.

Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

Tea cookies make everything better :D Good for your husband for finding something productive to do while he’s stuck at home!


It’s always good to have a man-creature who knows what to do with food (other than eat it). ;)


Agreed, that this is a good cup, but nothing spectacular.


Ooooh, nice bonus with the baking!


:D Excellent idea, especially since trying Cofftea’s molassas chocolate crackle yesterday really made me want to make molasses cookies. Maybe I’ll do that today, when I have my second cup of this. I’m enjoying my first right now, and it’s as you say—-nice and unassuming, and very smooth, but nothing spectacular.

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1908 tasting notes

So this is the end of the sample Ricky kindly gave me. I’m on a quest to finish off the little bits and dregs of teas that I have sitting around in my cabinet.

I’m drinking this with milk, which seems to be the way to go with this sucker. It tastes like a yunnan but more mild than the others of that variety that I’ve tried. It’s a little bit smokey, a little bit sweet, and a little bit malty without tasting strongly of either.

It has a decent re-steep (@5:30) although there are some bitter notes starting to creep in. It has a bit of a spicy bite to it, that I think got hidden by the milk in the first steep. Perhaps this is the mythical pepper flavour?

Boiling 4 min, 30 sec

Whistles. I sent you some of this? Hmmm, I mean I guess I did :)


Yup, it was awhile go (and much appreciated). :)

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260 tasting notes

I am trying to be good about trying my samples from swaps. You would think it wouldn’t be difficult, since I’ve gotten sent some very intriguing tea. However, one, I want to write about the tea I’ve gotten sent and I tend to spend a fair amount of time writing logs.

Two, I have enough that I tend to get overwhelmed when it comes to making choices. Really, I should just put all the samples in my cupboard and use the randomizer [find it here if you don’t know what that is – – thanks Jon [and teaplz, for the assist]], which I started doing but it makes my tea cupboard look absolutely insane and unwieldy to navigate. Can I just say that I find it hilarious that I have over a thousand searches on the randomizer even though I know that I personally haven’t used it that many times? You sneakersons! Maybe I should just make a dummy Steepster account so I have all my tea swap samples over there. Is it ridiculous that I’m thinking about doing that? Maybe, Overlords, we could have the option to make separate cupboards [like by tea type, or so that I could have a separate cupboard for swap tea]? Just thinking out loud. I would find that useful. I should also put that on the discussion board instead of just assuming the Overlords are going to read this…

Zeus, this post is a brain dump. Anyway, three, I just love Samovar so damn much it’s difficult to tear me away from them.

With all of that mess being said, I am going to be drinking swap tea near-exclusively so that I can start to pare down my not-so-mini-mountain of tea. As I’m sure you all are familiar, the vast quantities of already-owned tea has not stopped me from continuing to order more. Steepster Select is not helping.

So, here we have a tea that LENA sent me. [I like that little bolding thing y’all have been doing. To whoever started that: I think Angrboda did? thanks, Ricky! Clever.] LENA sent me enough that I had multiple brewing opportunities, all of which this log will be touching on.

When I see “Breakfast” in a tea name, my mind automatically assumes that this is going to be some kind of a blend. Reading the description on Steepster, though, it appears that this is straight Dian Hong, which was surprising. I haven’t had a lot of Dian Hong before, but I think I like it. It reads as a bit milder to me than other black teas.

This blend is smooth, which I appreciate. Rishi calls it robust, which it very well may be at longer steep times, but at 4 minutes and beyond the bitterness began to creep in for me and it makes it difficult for me to find other flavors when it’s there [in an elephant in the room kind of sense]. So, I retreated back a bit. I tried 2 minutes, which was way too mild for me. At 4 and 4:30 the bitterness wasn’t enough to make things undrinkable for me, but if I can get it to a place where that bitterness isn’t present it’s preferable. And so, 3 minutes was the magic number for me on this tea.

The scent of the liquid was rather lovely. It actually reminded me of coffee beans, mixed with scones. It brought forth many breakfast-like thoughts for me, which was appropriate. There was a definite sweetness to it that wasn’t terribly present in the taste.

The flavor was pleasant, but not remarkable. On the second steep of a particular run, I got this delicious, bite-a-ble, malty, almost salty, edging on savory flavor. It reminded me a lot of these belgian waffles I get from one of my favorite places to hit up for breakfast. Otherwise, I wasn’t getting a ton of flavor notes from it in general. Mainly, it tasted of that kind of default black tea flavor. There was a very, very slight, natural sweetness that waded in at towards the end of sips from time to time [more noticeably when the tea had cooled]. Reading the description after finishing my sample off, I didn’t notice any chocolate notes, but had I been looking for it, I might have been able to find it. [It would have been more of a dark chocolate/cocoa type of taste, I think.]

Lastly, I didn’t add anything to any of the cups, but I think that this could stand up to a splash of milk and a dash of sugar, for sure.

ETA: [because this log needs to be longer…] the third steep was very watery. I stopped at two on consequent runs.

All in all, this was a nice, unassuming, solid cup of black tea. Nothing mind-blowing, but if I were a black tea in the morning type of person, I could see this being an easy staple. As it is, I don’t think I’ll be ordering it, but it was nice to try. If I find myself gravitating more towards black tea in the future [as my tastes tend to shift over time], I’ll be keep this one in mind, though.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

No, it wasn’t me. I was sitting here wishing for some way to make people’s names stand out more. Like, idk, a little icon or something, and I don’t like to use @. Then I saw Ricky had started using bold for names, and stole the idea. :) I’ve seen several other people have adopted it too, which I think is cool. :)


Haha, did I? I mean we can use the @ like twitter and do the bold as well =]

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133 tasting notes

It is well past breakfast time, but this has been calling to me for a few hours now. So I’m trying this thanks to the Traveling Tea Box (A).

I tend to prefer flavored teas, but am finding that unflavored ones are slowly creeping onto my shopping list.

There’s very nice balance to this even though I’ve let my cup cool a little too much. I can’t see drinking this in the morning, as I usually tend to reach for something more on the punchy side. (I’m not a morning person!) But this will be a nice lunch or early afternoon tea for me.

I’ll keep an eye out for as one of the local grocery stores carries Rishi Tea. This will fill a void when I’m in-between staples coming in from Asia and can’t wait for them to arrive. :)

Boiling 4 min, 45 sec

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2145 tasting notes

I’m surprised that I haven’t reviewed this tea yet, especially since we go through so much of it that I buy it by the pound now. This has been my my tea of choice for ice tea since I moved to Wisconsin almost five years ago. I love the fact that I can buy my tea from a local company and as an added bonus it is Organic and Fair Trade Certified.

When it comes to black tea Dian Hong style is my favorite. This particular tea has a wonderful bold malty flavor with subtle cocoa notes. Many of my guests find that the flavor is too bold for their tastes, but that is easily solved by resteeping the same Tablespoon of tea several times and mixing it together. With this method I can always produce a flavor for everyone to enjoy (it also means my pound of tea lasts much longer.)

My only complaint about this tea is that the price has nearly doubled since I started buying it (it’s $42/lb from rishi or $33/lb from Amazon.) The price has increased enough that I have begun to look for other options for my everyday tea.

Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

Yikes, that’s quite a price jump even for a five year period.

Short Sorceress

I’m not sure if the fault lies with Rishi or Amazon, but all of Rishi’s teas that are sold on Amazon have nearly doubled in price.

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58 tasting notes


I let it go a little longer this time, mainly because that seems to help on resteeping. This holds up well to that treatment, and comes out slightly smoother but still rather flavorful. The perfume is still there, but much fainter, like a sachet of potpourri in your sock drawer. (What is it with me, socks, and this tea, anyway?! LOL)

Anyway, I timed the tea so it would be ready when my cookies were. I made some chewy molasses maple cookies, lightly spiced. They’re just a little crispy around the edges, and soft and chewy everywhere else.

It is heaven. Though, to be fair, these cookies would probably be good with a lot of black teas. I’ll be trying them with the aforementioned Molasses Chocolate Crackle next.

Homemade cookies/biscuits/cakes/whatever really do make EVERYTHING better. :9

Boiling 8 min or more

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