Fengqing Dragon Pearl Black Tea

Tea type
Black Tea
Black Tea Leaves
Chocolate, Honey, Malt, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes, Smoke, Dark Chocolate, Raisins, Wet Wood, Wet wood, Wood, Brown Sugar, Molasses, Cocoa, Musty, Spices, Floral, Thick, Baked Bread, Autumn Leaf Pile, Burnt Sugar, Earth, Mineral, Toast, Wet Earth, Leather
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Edit tea info Last updated by TeaVivre
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 45 sec 6 g 28 oz / 818 ml

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313 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I used 4 “balls”. and eventho the product description says ‘slight chocolate’ I picked up a whole bunch of chocolate-malty-goodness in this! Incredible! I’m going to do another infusion after this...” Read full tasting note
  • “After having Loaded Baked Potato Soup, I served Italian Cream Cake. I didn’t make it! A friend sent it to me and it came from Sam’s club and was delicious! The frosting tastes a lot like the...” Read full tasting note
  • “another tea from this morning. the world has distracted me today. :) However, i am looking forward to sipdown saturday! and sample sunday! woot woot!” Read full tasting note
  • “I went on a casual date last night. The guy messaged me afterward, and this morning I sent the “hey-I’m-not-really-into-dating-right-now-but-thanks-for-meeting-me” reply. Which shouldn’t sound like...” Read full tasting note

From Teavivre

Origin: Fengqing, Yunnan, China

Ingredients: The leaves come from wild tea trees

Taste: Taste sweet and smooth, with a slight flavor of chocolate

Brew: 3-4 pieces for 8oz of water. Brew at 212 ºF (100 ºC) for 1 to 2 minutes (exact time depends on your taste – a longer time will give the tea a stronger taste and color)

Health Benefits: Being a fully oxidised – or fermented – black tea, it does not have the same level of antioxidants that our White and Green teas have, however it is still a good source of these and so will also help reduce the risk of cancers and lessen the affects of aging. Black teas such as our Fengqing black also are considered to help prevent tooth decay and help lower your cholesterol levels.

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313 Tasting Notes

326 tasting notes

Tea sample provided by Teavivre for review

First steep had a chocolate smell to the liquor. Upon drinking it, I am reminded of other wonderful yunnan black teas I’ve tried. It is smooth, velvety, with a deep body and notes of chocolate, flowers, maltiness, and spices.

The second steep continued to strength in flavour and body. I also started to pick up on some caramel flavour and a “woody” quality to the familiar yunnan earthy body.

As I was moving onto sipping the third cup, I kept thinking about how strong the tea body tasted.

Fourth through sixth steeps  were great and only weakened subtly with each steep.

The first noticeably weak cup was the seventh. I kept steeping until the ninth just to see (taste) how long it could last. When I short steep this again, I will probably stop on the sixith steep.

This might be a bold statement, but I think this tea is a clear example of black tea done right. It’s smooth, velvety, has a strong body and is full of character.  It’s not the best resteeper, but still worth short steeping for an excellent six cups. Out of the five other Teavivre black teas I have tried this is my second favorite (first being the yunnan dian hong golden tips)

100ml gaiwan, 4 balls, 9 steeps (rinse, 30s, +15s each resteep)

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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486 tasting notes

4 pearls in a 200ml glass pot
I like short steeps when I’m drinking any Chinese tea. I tried longer steeps like 1min, but it doesn’t work for me. It becomes too bold, sometimes bitter, welcomes some unwanted flavors ( I don’t really like mineral taste). With short steeps I can notice some subtle changes, how flavors and smell progressed.
This tea is no exception to my rule. I tried longer steeps but didnt like it much.
rinse 10/15/20/30 to be cont
Starts kind of earthy but later on i got dark chocolate. Wet leaves smell of pure chocolate. Delicious. Some sugar or agave syrup would transform it into sort of dessert tea.

Flavors: Chocolate, Earth

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 OZ / 200 ML

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134 tasting notes

Using filtered water with a TDS of 27, I brewed 8 oz. of Fengqing Dragon Pearl Black Tea western style with 10 pearls per TeaVivre’s Brewing guide. Ten pearls equaled 16.8 grams per a My Weigh Durascale D2 660 scale.

Per brewing guide: 3 steeps: rinse, 1m, 2m, 3m at 212*F.

Fragrance: Cocoa

Liquor: Amber brown

Aroma: Cocoa with a caramel-like sweetness

I enjoyed the rich, moderately strong dark cocoa flavor and caramel-like sweetness of this tea medium-bodied tea. All three infusions were enjoyable and very consistent. In fact, with this much leaf, I was also able to produce 4m & 5m infusions for a total of 5 infusions. There was no hint of bitterness or astringency.

Impression: A high-quality, rich, smooth, medium-bodied black tea with a moderately strong dark cocoa flavor and a caramel-like sweetness. I agree with Ashmanra, I consider this to be an excellent afternoon tea.

Thank you to Angel Chen and TeaVivre for their gracious free sample of this high-quality tea.

Correction due to new scale: What I thought was 16.8 grams was actually 168 grains. I was in the incorrect weight mode due to the very small font used for the grain abbreviation (gn). Using a Grains-to-Grams conversion, the actual weight was 10.9 grams.


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90 tasting notes

The smell of the dry leaves brings to mind the deepest, darkest of woods, the kind you’d find in Redwall when Brian Jacques is really trying to send shivers up your spines. Once steeped, you get more of that sweet loam, but without the dustiness.

Steeping this tea in a large, transparent infuser will show you exactly why they’re called dragon pearls. Each one opens up like a dragon uncurling from its slumber, yawning and stretching and making the same creaky pterodactyl noises that you do in the morning. It;s got the sesame bronziness of most Chinese blacks, with a really sweet aftertaste. The longer it sits, the more profoundly sweet it gets. That’s the beauty of tea–it’s a transient experience. The flavor changes with every sip. This one’s immediate, fresh-poured taste was just a pregame… Full review here: http://snooteablog.com/2013/05/25/snooty-tea-review-teavivre/

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124 tasting notes

This was a free sample from Teavivre – thank you!
I brewed 4 “pearls” which, by the way, are adorable. I love the tactile way they rattle around in the tin.
I brewed this a little longer than I meant to, I was administering frozen pea first aid to my sister, but I caught it in time for it to be fine.
The liquor smells sweet and caramelly. The flavor of the tea black is a little sour for my taste, I think this is a tea I add milk too. I get malty flavors and a little bit of a nice… graham cracker taste? weird but good.
I want to try brewing this shorter again, but definitely fine how I brewed it!

Boiling 2 min, 30 sec

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757 tasting notes

I really like this tea!! Thank you Angel for this sample!

I’m actually on my second cup of this and it is sooo good! I have had pearls in other types of tea before (like jasmine green pearls), but never black. These ones seem maybe a bit larger than the other ones, but it’s been a while since the last time I had any tea pearls. I like my tea a bit strong so I used 5 pearls the first time, and 4 the second. Either amount is fine.

They smell very malty and chocolatey, and the taste is very rich and warming. I always add milk and sugar, so that added to the sweetness and creamy chocolateness. But for me, that’s fine. This is an excellent tea and I think it would be good iced…I might look into cold brewing this one over the summer.

I just want to add that I just love watching the pearls unfold in the hot water in my steeper.

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34 tasting notes

Tried it again today, steeped it only for a minute or 45 seconds, it came out very very silky, super-smooth. I guess I like it this way much more than my usual strong-steeped way.

Interesting, I’ll see what surprises will it bring me next ;) Info about my previous experience is in the previous tasting note about this tea!

190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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541 tasting notes

Thanks Teavivre for the sample!
Can I just say that these are super cute? For whatever reason I think these pearls are just precious. The thing is, I generally don’t like straight black teas (other than pu’erh) so this is a big step in a different direction for me.
I’m surprised how light this brewed! It is a very light, almost clear broth color. This smells very hay-like. The tea is pretty thin compared to other blacks I’ve had. I think I know why blacks are strange for me: they’re kind of meaty. This mostly has meaty, hay notes. It’s not a great tea for me, but I’m pretty sure a lot of people would really love this one!

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116 tasting notes

My first (official) shipment of tea from Teavivre has arrived! As my partner could tell you I’ve been looking forward to this shipment since I ordered it. I don’t have many (good) straight teas at the moment and so finding out about Teavivre through one of their contests this fall was a bit of good luck.

Dry this tea is visually intriguing and being rolled into small balls certainly makes it easier to get it prepped for steeping! The first thing I noticed when I opened the bag was a lovely dark malt smell. My father used to make beer in our basement and the scent of the tea really reminded me of the malty hops that he would start out with.

After a quick rinse I steeped this for about 40 seconds. Teavivre’s website recommended 30s but I used a bit more water (just over 4 oz) than what they called for so I bumped the time up a bit. The liquor comes out dark orange-brown and the aroma is heavenly. Really it was a toss up if I just wanted to keep my nose buried in my cup or to actually drink it. Sweet malt notes with some honey highlights, a bit of dark chocolate and under it all just a touch of earthiness to bring it all together.

As for the flavor… Oh wow! This has become an instant favorite for me. The aroma carries through to the flavor, malt and chocolate mixed to form a wonderful smooth experience. The mouth feel was rich and full but not heavy at all. And there was just a bit of dryness to this tea that helped to keep it from being cloying. As it cooled the malt notes stepped back a bit and the chocolate really started to shine though.

For the second steeping I left the leaves in for 70 seconds; this gave an orange-brown liquor that smelled of chocolate with a few sweet dark caramel notes underneath. Flavor wise this steeping is a bit more subtle than the previous one, but the dark chocolate tones really shine thorough with just enough malty sweetness to round it out nicely. There’s a bit of creaminess to this stepping as well.

The last steeping was for 1:45 minutes and this time I got a subtle caramel scented and colored liquor. The flavor had some of those same thick, creamy caramel tones to it as the aroma but there were still some hints of the chocolate. It also wasn’t as dry as the previous steepings, which I found to be a nice way to finish off this tea.

I have to admit that this was the tea that I was most looking forward to trying and it didn’t disappoint. I was really surprised at how a non-flavored tea could taste so much like chocolate (though I think I said the the same thing about Teavivre’s milk oolong…) and there were no floral notes to distract from the flavor profile either, which was nice to find. This is definitely a tea that I will be keeping stocked in my cupboard. Honestly, had a hard time writing this log up as I kept stopping to drink some more tea. I guess thats not a bad thing eh? ;)


This is one of my favorites from Teavivre.

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141 tasting notes

I am really loving this tea! Thanks TeaVivre team! This gives a new meaning to malt, in my books. I was never a fan of malt, even as a child Whoppers disgusted me. But WOW this is such a delicious chocolate malt flavour in a tea. I’ve been steeping 5 pearls in 10-12 oz mugs, with 3 min steeps to start. This can go for at least 3 steeps, probably more. The flavour sticks around throughout the steeps as well and doesn’t get too watered down like some black teas do after the first steep. Very smoothe too. My favourite part about this tea has to be the fact that it’s AMAZING iced with some sweetner and lemon juice.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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