What is Lapsang Souchong?

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Lapsang Souchong is a variety of black tea from China and is grown in the Wuyi Shan mountains of the Fujian province. The Chinese refer to Lapsang Souchong as a ‘Red Tea’- or ‘Tea for Westerners’.

This tea is famous for its smoky aroma and flavour which is produced by extra drying in large smoking drums over a pine wood fire. Although the overall lasting note is smoky, Lapsang tea can be a complex tea in terms of flavour profile and aromas; it is clean and crisp with a light gold liquor and a sweetness in its flavour .

We stock a range of Lapsang Souchong loose teas in our online shop, here is a flavour profile of each, to help make the choice a little easier.

Lapsang  Souchong Leopard has woody smoked notes, with a very light liquor and a delicate smokiness.

Lapsang Souchong Tiger is possibly our smokiest with slight Turkish delight/rose petal notes and a natural sweetness. This is also the lightest brew.

Lapsang  Souchong Falcon is our house Lapsang Souchong, and it has a slightly larger leaf to the rest. It has delicate grassy, vegetal notes with a subtle smokiness.

Lapsang  Souchong Crocodile is darker in the liquor than the other Lapsang Souchongs with sweet honey suckle notes.

Lapsang Souchong Osprey  has a pale golden liquor, with a delicate jasmine floral notes  and a subtle smokiness.

It is said that this tea was first produced by accident, when soldiers took over a tea factory in Xingun, during the Qing Dynasty. When they finally left, the workers had to dry the tea in record time to sell it at the market. In desperation, they lit open fires of pine to speed up the process, therefore the tea took on a smoky taste and aroma.

Thinking the tea was ruined, they sold it to Dutch traders telling them that it was a new variety. They enjoyed it so much, they paid double to have some more!

You can view our selection of lapsang tea’s on The Kent and Sussex Tea and Coffee Website.

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