Yunnan Black Gold Bi Luo Chun 2014

Tea type
Black Tea
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Campfire, Roasted, Smoke, Cinnamon, Cream, Malt, Nutmeg, Orange Zest
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Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by Lee
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 15 sec 3 g 7 oz / 207 ml

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11 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Is there any other tea as attractive as Bi Luo Chun? As the name implies, the rolled leaves are black and gold with aromas of chocolate and cocoa. Liquor is a beautiful rich mahogany. This follows...” Read full tasting note
  • “Another sample from Nicole – thanks! :) The dry leaves are cute little black and gold snails – love it. I was in the mood for a rich, malty black tea to brew western-style, and this is pretty much...” Read full tasting note
  • “Thanks again, Nicole! I thought this one was very similar looking to Mandala’s Morning Sun, possibly even the same harvest so I wanted to try this one soon after the other to compare. I think it...” Read full tasting note
  • “Got a sample of this from Nicole in our swap a couple months ago! Holy Shanghai. Not at all what I expected! It’s super smokey! Tastes like a campfire. Feels like I’m the only one who gets smokey...” Read full tasting note

From Yunnan Sourcing

Spring 2014 material from Ning’er county of Simao. This has been picked as 1 leaf to 1 bud sets and processed carefully rolling the tea into pellets. Like most Yunnan black teas the tea benefits from short-term aging and develops a malty sweet taste and lovely fragrance with a hint of chocolate and flowers.

March 2014 harvest

About Yunnan Sourcing View company

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11 Tasting Notes

87 tasting notes

Is there any other tea as attractive as Bi Luo Chun? As the name implies, the rolled leaves are black and gold with aromas of chocolate and cocoa. Liquor is a beautiful rich mahogany.
This follows through in the steeped aroma which is malty. It’s smoky as well, but not overpowering…altogether like a s’more. Nutmeg and more high frequency cocoa notes.

Taste is rich and creamy. rather sweet with some bitter astringency, which just makes me think more of cocoa.

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec

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350 tasting notes

Another sample from Nicole – thanks! :)
The dry leaves are cute little black and gold snails – love it. I was in the mood for a rich, malty black tea to brew western-style, and this is pretty much hitting the spot. It’s smooth and malty, maybe a little bit smoky, but I’m not finding it overwhelming. I’m actually not getting a lot of other flavours here, and I think it could have gone for a bit of a longer first steep. Tasty, but not one I feel compelled to immediately go out and buy more of (thank goodness!).

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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3863 tasting notes

Thanks again, Nicole! I thought this one was very similar looking to Mandala’s Morning Sun, possibly even the same harvest so I wanted to try this one soon after the other to compare. I think it is the same tea. This one did a little lighter than the Mandala BUT that could be a matter of using slightly less leaves this time (or some other parameter being off.) But this one results in three solid steeps that never get that oversteeped oaky leaf flavor. It’s such a complex deep tea though! I do get the barbeque notes at the top of the first steep that someone else mentioned, because at first it’s a little smoky and spicy/peppery. Malty, honey deep amber liquid follow for the remainders of that cup and the other steeps. I wish I had a tea like this in stock! I really wish I didn’t like quite so many varieties of tea.
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 tsps. // 10 min after boiling // 2 min
Steep #2 // 6 min a.b. // 2 min
Steep #3 // just boiled // 5 min steep


I find this one to be a bit smoother than Mandala’s with a bit less smoke. I like them both a ton but if I had to pick just one, it might be this one.


Ah, so it might not be the amount of leaves I used if you noticed it too. Maybe one is a spring harvest and one is a fall?


Perhaps. I found that the Morning Sun from one year was better (to my tastebuds) and with less smoke than it was the following year so it can always be all kinds of growing variations as well as processing.

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737 tasting notes

Got a sample of this from Nicole in our swap a couple months ago!
Holy Shanghai. Not at all what I expected!
It’s super smokey! Tastes like a campfire. Feels like I’m the only one who gets smokey notes. Totally threw me off. 0_0 Not a fan at all!
Glad I got to try though, I might have tried buying this one before!
Thanks for the sample, Nicole!

Flavors: Campfire, Roasted, Smoke


Sometimes I get smoke from the black bi luo chuns but not from this one yet. I didn’t get any from Whispering Pines Golden Snail until recently I don’t think. But my last 3 cups of it were pretty smoky. I think tastebuds just vary from day to day. :)


Oh that’s so weird!

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3294 tasting notes

Here I am, checking in from Cape Girardeau, MO. I played a gig here last night, in a beautiful garden that was lit up with orbs, twinkly little lights, etc. The temperature was perfect, about 77, not too many allergens in the air (or maybe just the ones my body is used to now), and there was waterfall, a babbling brook, & night birds calling. Although I mostly played a mix of jazz, new age, & classic rock (it was a cocktail party), as the crowd thinned I lapsed into some classical music, including ‘Clare de Lune’, which was perfect in that already ambient scene. Written for piano, but it is perfect on Harp.

So now it’s the Morning After, and I’m enjoying tea in my hotel room before the 2 hour drive back to St. Louis. I really have enjoyed this Black Gold Bi luo, but then again, I enjoy pretty much everything I get from Yunnan Sourcing, so no surprise there! I’m still not ordering any new teas, probably not until Fall, at least. But I am working on a favorites/re-order list, and this one will probably make the cut!

Christina / BooksandTea

Sounds lovely! Terri, are your recordings for sale anywhere?


Question, my boyfriend and fam are going to be vacationing in St Louis in a few days. . any recommendations of tea shops to hit while we are there?

Terri HarpLady

Christina, thanks for asking! I have 3 recordings available on my website You can listen to a couple of samples, and if you decide to purchase actual discs, I send tea samples with them :)
My music can also be downloaded from iTunes, if you prefer downloads. Just search for Terri Langerak.
Nichole – Come have tea with me!!
As for teashops, there are a few:
Traveling Tea, which is literally 2 minutes from my house, in Maplewood. She wholesales tea from Art of Tea & maybe a few other places, but also creates her own blends, my personal favorite being the Pumpkin Ginger Spice, which Sil & I both fawn over. It’s made from locally grown organic pumpkins that she roasts & dehydrates herself, and it’s only available in the fall.
Other places of interest in the Maplewood area of St. Louis:
- if you’re looking for something serene & of a healing nature, the St. Louis Salt Room, an old style salt spa.
- The original! If you like donuts with personality I myself cannot eat donuts or anything with gluten, dairy, sugar… :p…but everyone I know loves that place.
- The Bookhouse

Back to the topic of Tea, The London Tearoom is a great place to actually get a pot of tea & relax, and you can get the works…scones, clotted cream, etc. It is in the Tower Grove neighborhood, not far from I-44 (or from me).

While you’re here, be sure to visit the St. Louis City Museum, if you haven’t already been there!


You are fantastic! My boyfriend just offered to watch the kids one night so I can meet up with you and have tea with you. He is just too awesome. Let me talk more about him but that would be awesome. I’ll have to check those places out. We plan to hit up the City Museum. The kids have been there before and are excited to go back. We are also going to hit up the zoo and a few shops I found while I was there a couple years ago. I need to get a Gooey Louie too. Love those!

Terri HarpLady

wish I could try the gooey louies, but one more thing on the list of things I can’t have :p
At least I can have all the tea I want! :D

Christina / BooksandTea

Awesome! Much as the offer of tea with your CD tempts me, I think I’ll try iTunes just to keep things portable.

Christina / BooksandTea

Hey Terri, just a heads up: Your cover images are switched around on the iTunes store. The link for Cynical Serenity shows your old cover for Zen Breakfast, and the Zen Breakfast link shows the cover for Cynical Serenity.

Terri HarpLady

I just checked and you’re right! I don’t think it was originally like that, but I’ll have to call, who handles my digital sales, & see if they can fix it. Thanks for pointing it out!

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13950 tasting notes

Sipdown (109)!

Bring on the Black Friday crazies. At last Calendar Club’s sale today isn’t crazy; just “tax fee” for everything, so we shouldn’t be stupid busy.

Follow up to Brisk tasting note; I have a date with Lee on Saturday, after work. I’m gonna be crazy stupid tired, but what’s the worst that could happen? And, we spent most of last night texting. He’s so sweet and nervous and flustered and I feel so flattered, no one has ever been flustered over the idea of going on a date with me before (at least not visibly). He even came to work early today so he could come talk to me at my Kiosk before he started. Blushblushblush.

Anyway tea; I finished this one off at a latte last night: I’ve never had a straight black tea as a latte before so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I mean, how much of the natural tea flavour can you really expect to come through? Turns out just enough! Visually this looked golden and beautiful and taste wise it had just the right amount of malt and cinnamon notes coming from the tea to make this different from just hot milk. Really simple, really tastey!

Also I have to confess; every time I do a tea latte my favourite part of eat the milk film/skin that collects on the surface. That might be kinda weird, but I just love it!


So I am debating about buying the Breville milk frother from Davids…thoughts? If I buy it this weekend, I get a free timolino with purchase :P


Yes for the timolino! Haha. Otherwise, IDK. I have a little handheld frother and a microwave. That seems good enough. :)

Roswell Strange

How many timolinos do you currently have? :P I don’t have a milk frother though, and I get by totally fine – but it’d be nice to have around…

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6401 tasting notes

Sipdown!! (171)

Wow. This one is really, really good. My first sip I was blown away by the smooth malt and caramel flavor but as I continue to drink, I am detecting a creaminess that is really amazing in this cup. There is even notes of orange and chocolate to round everything out and make this complex and delicious. Thank you so much Roswell Strange for sharing this awesome tea!

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257 tasting notes

Tried a bit of this today gong fu style,,,it is brand new,,I will let the rest age a bit to develop more goodness :)
You open the package on this and it is OH Yeah,,,malty, creamy, sweet- smelling yumminess. The snails are perfectly rolled golden and brown cuties.
1. Rinse 30" creamy, malt scents and liquor is a reddish gold color.
2. 30" Leaves starting to really puff up,,,layered flavors, a citrus note is playing with the cream and malt.
3. 30" Leaves really open and big. They are a brown terra cotta mud color and they are all perfectly the same size and you can’t believe they were the little snail shapes :)
4. 30" Still full bodied, rich, citrus, malt, and cream.
5. 30" Starting to lose creamy notes now,,still malt and citrus.
6. 30" Leaves are saying farewell to me now.

Yummm great quality tea from Yunnan Sourcing :)
Tried this Western style today,,,190F , 1 tsp per 8 oz H20, brewed in a classic oval teapot 2 cups at a time. Steeped 3 minutes.
Also, coming off of a little travel cold so I can smell the deliciousness of this tea but my taste buds probably need one more day so keeping that in mind,,,,,the dry leaf is smelling so malty and good.
Brewed, the liquor is deep amber with scents of a sweet molasses. Oh yumm smelling!
Wet leaves are sooooo cute. They were cute tightly rolled little snails as dry leaves and when they unfurl, they turn into lazy chocolate colored snails. Still curly, but hang in’ out curly.
Flavor is creamy, hint of orange, and malt. I wish my taste buds were back to full capacity because this tea is good stuff. I am getting all the notes that I got last time so Western style brewing is cool as long as you don’t overleaf. I’m getting to where I just use 1 tsp per 8oz water and that’s usually what you need for a good cup. This is definitely good tea!!!
Had some more Gaiwan style today. Do not overleaf this one,,,it will become way to strong and develop a smokey paste flavor. Had put too many leaves into my gaiwan and had to start over bc of overleafing lol.
Finally found a way to bring out the best in this tea. I got a few cup size Western glass teapots with super large “same size as the pot” infusers. I brewed this 1 tsp per cup of water at 190F for 3 minutes. I watched the snails unfurl properly and the flavor does not have any bitterness or zest quality that stands out. I am really liking this brew the very best out of all the ones I have tried. (I am loving these “cup-size” teapots) There is still a pasty mouthfeel or flavor to this tea that is different for sure. There is almost a nutmeg flavor as well. The flavors are pasty, nutmeg, a bit of orange but very subtle.
Had a cup Western style this morning and put it up against a cup of Jin Die from Camellia Sinensis. The Jin Die snails are smaller than these snails so I wanted to see which I liked best.
This tea is brisk and full of flavor. I brewed it at 190F for 3 minutes. I think these Bi Luo teas are better suited to Gong Fu but Western is good too, it is definitely a stronger brew Western style. The flavors are smoky malt, orange zest, a touch of cream in the back of the tongue and throat. I am looking for my nutmeg note today and not catching it as much but it is a spicy hint so nutmeg is very subtle today this way.
In comparison to CS Jin Die, this one is deeper and more smoky malt, where the Jin Die is brighter and more citrus.
I found that the two size snails have completely different flavors which of course they would. It is cool to see how the different size in leaves and rolling can bring out such different flavors!
Still waiting on my Gong Fu tray but did this one Gong Fu style today. 190F immediate rinse then 30-30-30-30-30. It really is a beautiful amber orange color and has cream, malt, spice-nutmeg, and a touch of orange. The snails all open up to be double buds that are fairly large. Always a great red tea.

Flavors: Cream, Malt, Nutmeg, Orange Zest

190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML

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