Review: Chah Lapsang Souchong Premium

Black Tea, Chah, Lapsang Souchong Tea Add comments
Jamie’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!" Key to my enjoyment of this tea is that the smoky flavor has a real taste to it and is not just a mask over everything."
Jamie’s Teaview: 7.5/10
Other Teaviews: Geoff gave it 6/10, Katie gave it 7.8/10
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chahtealaspangsouchongI really have come to enjoy Lapsang Souchong tea, which is surprising to me given my mixed feelings after my first tasting of it. I always look forward to trying them now, though. Something about the piney, permeating smokiness really appeals to me. So it was with great interest that I opened my sample from Chah Tea, a UK based company new to me, and inhaled the sweetly smoky, full and robust leaf. The dry leaf is medium in length and an appealing combination of chubby and twisty.

Chah recommends brewing this tea at a ratio of one tsp. per roughly six ounces of water for two minutes. I am often a bit cautious with Lapsangs, no matter how inviting they smell to me, so I used a slightly hedged preparation method and steeped 1.5 tsp. in a 12 ounce infuser basket for three minutes.

This experimental treatment produces a surprisingly light colored cup and I decide to go ahead and follow this tasting with the recommended steeping parameters. The taste of the tea is lightly sweet, quite natural and balanced, with a pleasant smokiness that lingers in the mouth just a bit and is not at all harsh, overwhelming or charred in taste. The taste of the tea is actually smoky, you can discern a vaguely woody resonance to it that makes me eager to try another cup.

The stronger (I should say "the recommended" but I steeped the leaves for three minutes rather than two) steeping yields a slightly more coppery cup that is neither very dark nor very light. This is a well balanced, very enjoyable Lapsang. It's very light in body but has a wonderful TASTE to it that is quite full without being heavy (I consider the lack of heft important in a tea with such a forwardly smoky flavor). Key to my enjoyment of this tea is that the smoky flavor has a real taste to it and is not just a mask over everything.

I think this would make an excellent afternoon pick me up tea. The sweetness of the tea and the full flavor is very satisfying. The flavors are such that even someone a bit shy with Lapsang Souchong could probably find this an intriguing and possibly excellent tea. Someone who enjoys Lapsang would most likely find this one worth sampling.

— To purchase Chah Lapsang Souchong Premium, or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

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