Smoked Lapsang Souchong is my all time favorite tea, and I recently ordered some samples from Mei Leaf and their smoked Lapsang called Longan Lapsang was one of the teas I purchased. I must say it is difficult to “taste” my favorite tea, whereas I would much rather just enjoy the moment and savor the tea without trying to pick up different tasting notes. That being said, I wrote what I thought about this tea. Let’s get to it.
The first thing I noticed and wanted to savor was the smell of those dry leaves. As soon as I opened the packet, I was hit with that wonderful glorious smell of smoky goodness. Something about that smoky smell just speaks to the depths of my soul in a way that I can’t put into words in a way that no other tea or any beverage can. I had high hopes for this tea as I do for all Mei Leaf teas and so far so good.
I used the full packet of 5 grams in a 100 ml gaiwan with 200F water. I steeped for 10 seconds + 5 for each additional infusion.
I try not to peek at the seller’s taste notes on new teas and just try to see what I can taste on my own. But in this case, they put the notes right on the front of the packet so I was already looking for those notes, even if subconsciously.
I noticed smoke of course on the first infusion and a general fruit taste. Don Mei is a supertaster and I am nowhere near that level. So I am going with fruity. The texture is super smooth and quite thick. On the second infusion, I noticed a bit of a chocolate note along with the fruit and smoke.
On the third infusion, I got a strong taste of chocolate, which was nice. I also started to feel a warming sensation during this infusion. The fourth infusion had more of a fruit taste to it. The smoke is still there. The fifth had more of a fruit note as well as smoke. I also started to feel energized during this infusion.
On the sixth, I got a strong taste of banana, and the smokiness is still there. On the seventh and final, I noticed the banana and the chocolate had returned. It was very interesting and quite pleasant.
I realize smoked Lapsang Souchong is a love it or hate it tea. There is no middle ground with this one. I fall into the love it category and this tea certainly didn’t disappoint. If you fall into the hate it camp, but haven’t yet tried this version of it, I would implore you to give this tea a chance. This tea is so complex. There’s so much more to it than smoke. I can tell the leaves are high quality and great care has been taken to get the most flavor out of them. In my humble opinion, the smoke enhances this tea. Unsmoked Lapsang is also delicious but I prefer smoked.
The price on this one is $11.71 for 50 grams. 5 grams per session is 10 sessions in a packet. That is $1.17 per session. You could go 8 or more infusions, but let’s use 7 because that’s what I just did. At 7 infusions, that comes to $.17 per cup! This is definitely worth that price. That is a great price for this quality and complex tea! Shipping to the US is around $9 minimum, which isn’t too bad coming from the UK. Order multiple items at once to spread the shipping costs out.
Smoked Lapsang is my jam and this tea delivered on every aspect. I highly recommend it. Cheers!