I have always been a green tea drinker...

Fully oxidized tea leaves for a robust cup.

Feb 10th 06 4:53 pm

by chennung » Feb 10th 06 4:53 pm

Hello Tea Fanatic
as many people here have suggested, I'd go for oolong, which comes in several degrees of oxidization and can help you make the transition into black at your own pace. If you want to jump straight into black, though, I'd go for Darjeeling. There is also a very light China tea you could try, called Chingwoo, but I only ever found it in France. Steer clear from Kenya and the breakfast blends--especially Irish Blend--because they'd probably be too strong for you at this stage. Assam is quintessentially black tea, with a malty taste, so it may not be your cup of tea just now. Wait until your tastebuds get adjusted--and then give it a shot, because it's one of the best blacks in the world. Same goes for Keemun, IMHO.

Feb 12th 06 2:26 pm

by chennung » Feb 12th 06 2:26 pm

Sorry, Lady Arden, you're absolutely right. i think I suffered from a case of bad fast-reading...And I do agree with you: Assam is great.

Feb 12th 06 9:13 pm

by Guest » Feb 12th 06 9:13 pm


You are indeed absolutely right: there is no reason to be so harshly critical against someone else's recommendation. You made some great recommendations for first experiences and then mentioned a personal favorite of your own as a suggestion for eventual attempt.

We all love tea. I don't think anyone here is trying to put anyone or any tea down so much as being as helpful as they possibly can. Sometimes we just get a little caught up in our passions, especially if one had too much Irish Breakfast that afternoon!

I personally think quality and freshness are major factors as much as the type of tea when seeking out more subtle, less "generic black tea tasting" experiences. The amount of tea used and the steeping time are also major factors.

Everyone in the world should try a quality, fresh Assam that's carefully prepared and not drowned in thick sweet milkiness. It's too often turned into tea candy. Though, I do love tea candy every now and again too!

If anyone is interested, www.assamtea.biz has some great Assam and Darjeeling offerings, including some flavored Assams. They specialize in Assams, including whites, greens, blacks, CTC (cut-tear-curl), and florets. Prices range from under $1 per ounce to just under $3 per ounce. Service is friendly, knowledgeable and completely committed to satisfaction of even the most demanding customer. I personally found it a great way to explore a wide variety of Assams at a reasonable price, instead of ordering the typical 2 or 3 per teashop.

Most tea lovers will be pleasantly surprised by the full range of flavor and body profiles within the Assam region. Not just for Irish Breakfast anymore!

Will Gladly,

Jing Cha

I need them [lamps] only for my own use and guidance
until I have done something for myself by their light.
If the lamp smokes or smells I shall try to trim it.
If it does not give light enough I shall sell it and
buy another.

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Feb 12th 06 9:45 pm
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by Jing Cha » Feb 12th 06 9:45 pm


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Feb 15th 06 9:56 pm
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by TeaFanatic » Feb 15th 06 9:56 pm

I tried my first black tea yesterday, the red bloom from adagio. While the smell was certainly not the most appetizing, I could easily handle the bold body of black tea (I used to drink coffee). If I were looking for a black tea to make in the morning before I go to school, what would be the best tea to wake me up...besides english breakfast and earl grey, because those are too common.


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Feb 15th 06 10:56 pm
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by rhpot1991 » Feb 15th 06 10:56 pm

I prefer greens & whites and don't really care for a lot of black teas. Out of adagio's black selection I enjoy golden monkey and ceylon sonata.


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Feb 16th 06 2:49 pm
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by klemptor » Feb 16th 06 2:49 pm

TeaFanatic - Keemuns and Yunnans will do the trick.

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by Dronak » Feb 20th 06 2:05 am

I'm not really sure which black teas are lighter and more likely to be enjoyed by someone who's used to green tea. However, I do like the idea of working your way up/down the scale -- black, oolong, green, white. Oolongs are basically between black and green, so you might want to try some of those instead of going straight to black teas. The other general suggestion that looked good was to keep the black tea brewing time on the short side. That should help keep the flavor light by not leeting the leaves steep for too long.