So, on a recent late autumn afternoon, I sat and enjoyed a pot of Verdant Tea’s Zhu Rong Yunnan Black. Next I bundled up, drove to the park, and went for a run before the early darkness hit. While listening to tunes and soaking in the last moments of daylight, there was only one thing going through my head: this tea! My brain was feeling both appreciative for the first pot, all the while screaming; “finish this run so you can get back and brew the 2nd infusion”. Faster!

If you love bittersweet dark chocolate, this is the tea for you. The dry leaf is sort of a mix between sweet potato and cocoa, while the wet produces a more woodsy-dark chocolate scent. The liquor’s bittersweet dark chocolate aroma is simply terrific. It’s not the sort of scent you get with some flavored chocolate teas that have a certain artificiality to them. It’s a genuinely immersing scent that hits you straight to the core. This medium bodied brew is silky rich upon sipping. The intensity of the flavor peaks near the back of the mouth and throat where a delicious bittersweet dark chocolate note hits and then lingers. I get a little malt near the end of the sip as well. This is just an incredibly smooth and satisfying tea to drink. When I finish a pot, I continue to yearn for more. This tea continues to be enjoyable on additional infusions. These later infusions exhibit a slightly lower dark chocolate intensity with some added peppery spice appearing mid-mouth.

Simply put, if you love bittersweet dark chocolate and you don’t try this tea, you are really missing out. Run.

205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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