Yunnan Rose Dragon Ball Black Tea

Tea type
Black Tea
Black Tea, Rose
Honey, Rose, Smooth, Sweet, Cacao, Floral, Malt, Spicy, Flowers, Spices, Sweet Potatoes, Yams, Tea, Musty, Pepper, Toasty
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Edit tea info Last updated by TeaVivre
Average preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 30 sec 8 g 11 oz / 332 ml

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17 Tasting Notes View all

  • “An absolutely phenomenal rose tea: smooth, sweet, dark black tea with the heady aroma of an old English rose garden. Forget what I’d do for a Klondike bar, what would I do for a bag of Dragon...” Read full tasting note
  • “This tea was a wonderful disappointment. Generally, I am not a big fan of teas with flowers/herbs added (ginseng, jasmine etc.)- the additions usually overpower whatever tea they are grafted on...” Read full tasting note
  • “Additional note: Sipdown and this was pretty good as an overnight cold brew. :D The floral notes were more pronounced in the cold brew, still has some malty, honey sweet, yam notes, no bitterness....” Read full tasting note
  • “Another Friday, another sample from Teavivre to try. Things are looking up. These “dragon ball” teas are pretty cool. This one was individually wrapped in clear cellophane and fastened with a...” Read full tasting note

From Teavivre

Rose - Kunming City, Yunnan Province, China
Tea - Pu’er City, Yunnan Province, China

Plucking Standard: One bud with one leaf

Dry Leaf: Hand rolled into ball-like shape covered with a few golden tips, each ball is roughly 8-9 grams

Aroma: Strong rose flower aroma

Liquor: Bright orange-red color

Taste: Combining a well-balanced taste of black and rose flower tea, it tastes smooth and mellow with a hint of bitterness.

Tea Bush: Yunnan large-leaf tea species (over 80 years old)

Tea Garden: Jiu Tai Po Tea Garden

A tea that is convenient for you to carry out, especially for ladies who work in the offices. By drinking it, you can get both of the full benefits from black and rose herbal tea.

About Teavivre View company

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17 Tasting Notes

38 tasting notes

An absolutely phenomenal rose tea: smooth, sweet, dark black tea with the heady aroma of an old English rose garden. Forget what I’d do for a Klondike bar, what would I do for a bag of Dragon Balls?

As others have noted, the rose aroma begins to really fade off as you re-brew. I enjoyed the base tea enough that it didn’t bother me one bit.

Personal Note: I brewed this with Gongfu times rather than “traditional” steep and got about 14 steeps per ball (in a 4 cup teapot) before I noticed significant tea weakening. This also stretched the rose scent out into the 5th or 6th steep.

Flavors: Honey, Rose, Smooth, Sweet

Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

Yeah, I really liked both of Teavivre’s Rose teas as well. Such different approaches to adding roses yet both are so good.

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192 tasting notes

This tea was a wonderful disappointment. Generally, I am not a big fan of teas with flowers/herbs added (ginseng, jasmine etc.)- the additions usually overpower whatever tea they are grafted on and the tea used for the base are frequently not the best quality. But I make exceptions for roses because, well, I love roses. And I wanted to reorder another Teavivre’s rose tea where the smell and taste of roses was bordering on obscene (and which pleased me greatly!) Instead I ordered these dragon balls because they were on sale – and also because I thought it was the same tea mix, just rolled up into balls.

When I opened the balls I was shocked since there was no overpowering rose aroma out of the package and each ball contained just a couple of rose flowers. Then I was shocked again by how balanced the tea these balls produce. The dianhong used for the base is pretty good and it hits you with a typical Yunnan sweet bitterness, which immediately softened and smoothed out by the rose petal smoothness. It results in an incredibly well-balanced, smooth drink. Its like dianhongs and roses were made for each other to represent a study in bringing together Yin and Yang.

Among less impressive observations: this delicate balance does not last for multiple steeps, the aroma is fairly generic for Yunnan teas and the taste is not especially complex. Anyway, it is a memorable and generally enjoyable tea.


“This tea was a wonderful disappointment.” Omgosh… Exactly. I just recently tried and reviewed it.


Sounds awesome! What was the tea that was “bordering on obscene”? I love rose in tea, also!


ashmanra – Alas, you had already tried this tea (Rose Dian Hong Black Tea by Teavivre) and found it to be good but not as good as Rose Scented Black by Harney and Sons. Such is the fate of a tea drinker with 2000+ tasting notes: rarely will she find anything truly new.

Appalachian Tea

I got these as well and it really is mind blowing how beautiful that first cup is!

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325 tasting notes

Additional note:
Sipdown and this was pretty good as an overnight cold brew. :D The floral notes were more pronounced in the cold brew, still has some malty, honey sweet, yam notes, no bitterness. I prefer the gongfu cha taste profile better because of the strength of the brew, strong malty, yam, cocoa notes, subtle rose but it’s just so lovely watching the dragon balls and the pink rose petals in it unfold in my 1-liter mason jar. So pretty :D.

Flavors: Flowers, Honey, Malt, Rose, Spices, Sweet Potatoes, Yams

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247 tasting notes

Another Friday, another sample from Teavivre to try. Things are looking up.

These “dragon ball” teas are pretty cool. This one was individually wrapped in clear cellophane and fastened with a little baggy tie. It was a tightly rolled ball of dark leaves and pinkish flowers about the size of a gumball. The unbrewed knob had a pronounced tea smell with a slightly rose/flowery accent.

I followed the instructions on the silver sample package and brewed the ball for five minutes at 195 degrees. The package actually said 194 degrees but 195 was the closest my One Touch Tea Maker could get. What’s one degree between friends anyway?

The steeped liquor had a bright gold color. The odor was very much like its unbrewed incarnation: tea with a rosy accent.

The taste was completely consistent with its smell, before and after brewing. The tea flavor was full-bodied and robust, yet it was remarkably smooth. A rose bud undertone melded into the taste perfectly. This was a relief for me as I am often overwhelmed by flowery-tasting teas. There also was the presence of a sweet attribute to round out the extremely harmonious blend. I did not detect any astringency and the aftertaste was quite light and pleasant. If the 195-degree liquid temperature hadn’t been capable of producing blisters on my gullet, I would have chugged my cup down even faster than I did.

This is another outstanding tea from Teavivre that I can easily recommend. It worked extremely well for me with my breakfast but I’m sure it would also be a fantastic lunch or mid-day selection as well.

Flavors: Rose, Sweet, Tea

195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML

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371 tasting notes

Samples provided for review. Thank you, Angel! This review is based on the second session.

Brewed with a gongfu session, in a 120ml porcelain gaiwan. The dragon ball weighed 9.7g. I used 190 degree and then 200 degree water since my kettle does have a 195 setting. I gave the ball a rinse and a quick rest to open up. Steeping times are pulled from the website: 25 seconds, 20, 10, 15, 20, 30, 40, 80 (etc.)

The dry leaf aroma has notes of rose and typical Dian Hong (malt and chocolate). After I let the ball sit in the pre-heated gaiwan for a bit, I smell freshly baked brownies – incredibly fresh. Makes me want to make brownies. The wet leaf, in order from strongest to weakest, smells of rose, malt, and brownies. As the session when on, an allspice note took over.

The liquor, a clear golden orange, has a full body and smooth texture. The flavor doesn’t evolve; it’s constant. Comparing this to the loose rose-scented Dian Hong that Teavivre also carries, the dragon ball is much more balanced. The rose doesn’t overwhelm the typical Dian Hong notes, which are, again, malt and chocolate, plus a hint of allspice and black pepper. It’s as if the rose is naturally steeped from the leaf rather than an addition. Speaking more the Dian Hong’s overall quality, it’s a very nice quality. Very few broken leaves or buds. It’s delicious, clean, and comforting. Additionally, whole rose buds and petals are pressed into the ball. WHOLE. I like that touch.

I’m not very big on rose when it comes to the tea and flower combination. It’s OK. I do, however, adore Dian Hong. Since I’ve sampled both the dragon ball and the loose leaf, I can say that I prefer the dragon ball. I felt like the rose-scented loose leaf comes off as overpowering. If you prefer a flower “flavored” tea in which the flower isn’t too strong, this is something to try.

However, as someone who watches caffeine intake, I don’t like the idea of dragon balls much because there are so many grams crammed into one piece. Both of these dragon balls provided weighed nearly 10 grams – double my typical maximum. Another thing to consider. At least with the loose leaf I can control leaf amount more easily.

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2929 tasting notes

Additional notes: Note to self, never put this lovely tea in a disposable tea bag again, only in a tea basket… the tea barely unraveled and I know there is a TON of tea here. So I wasn’t giving this tea a fair chance. But I know it’s lovely anyway. I’m not sure if it’s because it didn’t unravel or if it’s a different harvest, but I was noticing a huge syrupy sweet quality in the 2016 harvest which wasn’t present here as much. Maybe that quality would have appeared in a third cup that I mistakenly didn’t make. I don’t like wasting my tea.

Also, Teavivre is having an amazing black tea sample sale right now. (And larger amounts of black tea are 15% off.) Some teas are 75% off, but you can only buy one of each sample (meaning two sample packages of each black tea). It’s a great sale if you want to try most of their black teas!


Thanks for the info. I’ve been wanting to try their Keemuns!


Oh, that is info I definitely didn’t need…and will be taking advantage of. :D

Mastress Alita

It is a shame that I am hardcore sticking to my New Year’s Resolution to not buy any tea. (Besides, $800 in car repairs has pretty much obliterated the tea budget for some time, making it even easier to stick to that…) That is a killer sale, though. And I love Chinese blacks. So sads. T-T

Cameron B.

Ooh, thank you for letting us know! Sounds like a good time to pick up 100g of their black dragon pearls and try some other black teas as well.


Mastress Alita -sorry about your car. Hopefully this will be a yearly Teavivre sale?


I just received this last week, along with the Chrysanthemum one. Now you’re making me look forward to trying this one. The Chrysanthemum one was very good. Just worried it’ll taste too much Rose o.O. I keep buying rose teas and I don’t really like rose… What’s up with that? >.< lol Anyway, thanks for heads up on the sale! yay


Both harvests I’ve tried of these had barely any rose flavor, so I’m sure you’ll like them (but neither harvest I’ve tried has been the newest harvest). Their Rose Dian Hong in the past has been VERY rose flavored though.


Yay good to know. I will try this afternoon. ^^

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797 tasting notes

Forefront flavour of tea is a bit flat. I am detecting notes of candy licorice sweetness.

195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec 13 OZ / 375 ML

when are you home again?

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1135 tasting notes

Well hello Steepster, it’s been a long time again! Since my last note I’ve been to Japan and back, which was absolutely amazing and I wish I was still there, and had delicious tea, partook in a tea ceremony and bought copious amounts of tea and a new matcha bowl for myself haha. But that can be for a different note, today it is the last day of bitterly frigidly cold temperatures before a MASSIVE warm up (from – 20 C to -1..overnight) so I had to have a cozy black tea today as it’s been way too long since I’ve had a good black tea!

This tea came to me as a free sample from the ever generous Angel at Teavivre, thank you so much for your kindness to send me this tea to sample!! I opened up the sample expecting a few small pearls, but there was one giant tea ball in it (large in comparison what I’m used to anyways haha) in the cutest little wrapper. Love how it looks!

The dry smell is so sweet and seductive, wow! I was reading about the roses used in this tea and I agree that they are much different than other roses I’m used to in tea, this tea was much sweeter than rose smelling, however the floral note is still there, just luxuriously sweet, so interesting! I decided to steep it Western Style as I want a cozy mug, so I used 194 degree water and steeped for 3 minutes.

The resulting liquor is quite a dark rich red, and smells phenomenal, robust honeyed Yunnan black tea notes, with some grain notes.

As for the flavor, wow this seriously blew me away with the first sip. I have not had a good black tea in a long time, mostly due to my caffeine tolerance, but this is something else!! Bready, malty, and so much honey notes!! The rose is very subdued, it is mild but adding to the mouthfeel with a bit of dryness and that floral feel, hard to describe but it is definitely there. I can’t get over how much sweet honey there is in this, it’s like a floral honey really!! Wow. Also so far not hurting me for caffeine, my heart rate is super low drinking this and I feel great.

Overall this is a super delicious tea! Lots of honey, malt, a touch of floral, but not the rose you are thinking. If you have a fear of rosey, floral teas, this one might change your mind.

It’s also slightly romantic in a way to me, maybe because rose reminds me of my garden in the summer, and evokes fresh summer memories, but it’s making me feel sentimental. Could also have something to do with that today is mine and the bf’s 7 year dating anniversary :) a perfect tea for today! Wish he was home from work!

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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61 tasting notes

Quite pleasantly surprised by this tea, since I expect rose teas to be a bit overwhelming. Instead this was well-balanced and nourishing and the scent added to the tea leaf rather than covering it up. Ruby, woody flavors.

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4641 tasting notes

Thank you Angel at Teavivre for sending this my way as this is a lovely tea, both aesthetically and flavor wise. The leaves have been steeping for over a half hour and yet there is no astringency or bitterness whatsoever. Just smooth black tea with a hint of rose. Malty and floral with a hint of honey and a dash of pepper. It’s mellow and would be nice for those days when you just want something simple that you don’t need to really think about.

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