Yunnan Black Tea

Fully oxidized tea leaves for a robust cup.

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Aug 6th 09 1:55 am
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Re: Yunnan Black Tea

by thirtysixbelow » Aug 6th 09 1:55 am

I just tried some golden yunnan for the first time. I'm not much of a black tea drinker but I really liked this. Certain malt flavors are unappealing to me but the golden yunnan I tried is excellent. It has some of that usual black tea malt flavor but also some earthiness and a hint of a rooibos like flavor. I was expecting a peppery taste like others have said but this one didn't seem to have much. I got it from a local tea store so no telling how true to style it is but I will definitely explore this tea some more.

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Sep 29th 09 12:11 am
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Re: Yunnan Black Tea

by Komsip » Sep 29th 09 12:11 am

Yunnan Gold, except for some Darjeeling teas, are really the only black teas I enjoy very much.
In a Swedish average tea store (one of those with 90 perfumed flavored black teas and 10 real teas, often of low grade), I bought some low quality “Yunnan Gold Superior", which was not unsurprisingly not as "superior" as it claimed, but it was what got me interested in these teas.

It had only maybe 10-20% golden tips and was very broken, but it was richer and sweeter and more interesting than any black tea I had in my life before, there was this weak tone of leather and the smell of old wooden middle-Sweden 19th century barns (I guess this is the flavour some describe as "earthy" or maybe it's "malty", but I don't know what malt tastes like). This smell of old middle Swedish barns is the aroma that is found in Pu'er teas, specially strong in "cooked" (shu) Pu'er. But at the same time it was very sweet and round (but easily god very strong such flavor) even though it was a low grade Yunnan Gold (these low grade broken ones are called Dian hong sui cha (滇紅碎茶). These are mostly used in English blends as I understand it, and are real cheap and BOP quality leaves but I must say I liked it because of it's Pu'er barn-like qualities.
But later (some week ago) I ordered two types of Yunnan black teas from a Swedish online tea shop that sells serious teas (one of only 4 such in Sweden, it's called House of Tea ( it's in Swedish though, but other Swedish or Scandinavian users might find it useful in case they don't know of it already).
The ones I ordered from that place were:
One expensive with only golden buds: Dian hong jin ya 滇紅金芽 (means like: Yunnan Red Golden Bud)
One cheaper with mostly (~70%) black leaf: Dian hong jin zhen 滇红金针 which means Yunnan Red Golden Needle.
Trivia: 金针 (jin zhen) is a wordplay since it can also mean "day lily bud" which is a golden (orange really) flower bud which is used in Chinese cooking. But the leaves are thin like needles unlike the much wider and softer buds in the Dian hong jin ya. So it means two things, very smart, and the smell of the dry leaves is indeed more flowery in this cheaper one.

The two have this certain Yunnan Gold tea aroma that is unlike anything else but very sweet. The one with black leaves is more bitter, but has a stronger aroma specially of the dry leaves (which are very whole and long). The golden-buds-only tea (Dian hong jin ya) has a much sweeter rounder mouth flavour but of the same very special type of aroma, but it is also much milder, so it needs more leaf, or more buds to be precise. But since the all-golden-bud tea cost 4 times as much, and you need more of it, it's certainly a tea only for rare occasions.

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Sep 29th 09 5:04 am
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Re: Yunnan Black Tea

by JillDragon » Sep 29th 09 5:04 am

I tried a cup of Adagio's Yunnan Jig today, the first Yunnan I've tasted. The leaves were longer than I'm used to seeing but it was neat watching them expand and unfurl while they steeped (5 minutes). I'm not entirely sure what they meant by 'peppery' in the description, to me it tastes more smokey but with a cleaner, vegetale undertone almost like what you'd get in a green tea maybe.

This is one I'll have to experiment with the steeping time more, but I think it's quite enjoyable thus far. It's robust enough that it'd probably be a good wake-me-up tea to have in the morning.

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Oct 14th 09 5:36 pm
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Re: Yunnan Black Tea

by Janine » Oct 14th 09 5:36 pm

I love Yunnan black teas. One organic golden Yunnan (very tippy) is a particular favorite I return to. It has loads of flavor (love the oily bubbles that rise to the top on the early brews). You get the richness of good Yunnan tea in a black. Wonderful.

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Oct 15th 09 9:29 pm
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Re: Yunnan Black Tea

by Komsip » Oct 15th 09 9:29 pm

Two days ago I got a package from Kunming in the mail, from Scott at Yunnan Sourcing. I had ordered 3 types of Yunnan Gold, among other things. So here I offer a mini review.

These are the three types I ordered:
  • Yunnan Black Gold * 1 leaf / 1 bud Simao Black Tea 250g
  • Imperial Feng Qing Dian Hong Black Tea * 100 grams
  • Dian Hong "Jin Hao" Black Tea * Spring 2008 * 100 grams
The cheapest one, which I also bought most of, was the 1 leaf / 1 bud Simao Black Tea, was actually my favorite, very strong sweet aroma that is very special typical Dian Hong aroma. What I can liken it most to is dark honey, like heather honey, but it also has some barn/horse tones in there. Lucky I bought most of this one.

The most expensive one, Imperian Feng Qing Dian Hong has a similar main aroma to the one before, but not as strong and sweet. It is however more complex and has finer small tones, but it's less simple pleasure.

The Dian Hao "Jin Hao" of spring 2008, had a very different aroma from the other two. A strong aroma, as strong as the first one i mentioned, but totally different. This one is more citrusy. It was very good too, but very different from the other two, and most Dian Hong I've had.

Oct 18th 09 4:24 pm
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Re: Yunnan Black Tea

by the nub » Oct 18th 09 4:24 pm

I just picked up a sample of Bamboo Temple Yunnan from a local shop. I believe they get most of their tea from Metropolitan. My immediate impression was it reminded me of Ovaltine, so the malty descriptor is right on IMO.

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Nov 3rd 09 8:50 am
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Re: Yunnan Black Tea

by cha-fu » Nov 3rd 09 8:50 am

Anyone has a picture of "1025 Supreme China Black Tea GOLDEN NEEDLE YUNNAN" from TeaFountain ( ... _info.html)? Wonder what tea leaves look like.

Nov 5th 09 9:20 am
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by Tea and coffee » Nov 5th 09 9:20 am

marlena wrote:I often buy a bunch of samples of Yunnan and then buy a larger supply of the ones I really like. Personally, I generally like the Yunnan Gold the best. What is Yunnan Jig? This the first I have heard of it.
The Yunnan Jig from Adagio is I am correct? to me it looks just like the Yunnan "golden tips" tea I just bought from soemwhere else.
The one I bought is not really a "brand" though, so you will have to have fun sampling till you find a good one!

To me the golden tips tea is very smooth and reminded me of bottled iced tea that is black without the bitterness.

I really want to try the yunnan all golden tea, but have toomuch tea here right now.

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Oct 13th 11 11:55 am
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Re: Yunnan Black Tea

by Simone » Oct 13th 11 11:55 am

How many minutes do you use to brew the Imperial Feng Qing Dian Hong?