drank Zi Ran Smoke by Hugo Tea Company
23 tasting notes

I purchased this tea back in 2021 and it was the first Lapsang Souchong I tried. I had it along with it’s un-smoked variant and I was impressed by how nice it was. This has what I’d call a medium level of smoke applied to it. It’s not overdone and overpowering like you’d see from other vendors. I feel like Hugo takes a lot of pride in finding a really good base tea and they want you to be able to taste a bit of the tea itself.

The tea is very smokey and pine forward, but you get hints of the sweetness of the black tea and a little bit of the tannin from it. The smoke is a little more tangy, closer to mesquite than the typical piney acidity. It is a really well crafted tea.

I have revisited this tea many times, gone through about 200 grams of it, and purchased it again in 2022. Every time I purchased a new Lapsang, I try it for a week and then compare it to this. Over the years, it has lost a significant amount of it’s kick. I still very much enjoy it, but I really wish Hugo would restock this tea with stock from this year. I will leave this not recommended as I see the site doesn’t have stock past 2022 and I really think you should try this tea while it is in its prime. As it stands, my 2022 stock is closer to a ranking of 85, but I ranked it around a 95 when it was fresh and punchy.

Flavors: Pine, Smoke, Sweet, Tangy, Tannin

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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