This originally struck me as my second favorite of Teaful’s Chapter 4 box for it’s dinstinctly sweet honey flavor before I figured out how I like the Shan Lin Xi Black. It pretty much tastes like a black version of most Jin Xuans you might have had with a Gui Fei’s honeybun floral character. For those of you who have read some of my previous notes, this tea is very dang similar to the Vietnam Red Buffalo with a black tea’s malt and a slight herb quality in the very later steeps. Those new to Taiwaneese would see this as a standard tasting black tea with a sweet edge, and may get a fruity impression. Snobs would appreciate it as an enduring one that flexes a little bit of lemon and violet in the notes as Teaful Describes.

The tea does not differ too much Western or Gong fu so far because it’s honeyed flavor remains the same. Western 3 minutes is thickens it a little more at once, but Gong fu spreads out the flavor in viscous coats. Again, Honeybuns is how I would prefer to describe it albeit with a malty black tea background. I got the violets more in steeps 2, 3, and 5 gong fu while I get the herby sage in the very last three steeps out of seven after four minutes. I do not know if it is doable grandpa with less leaves yet, and although I do not think it will hold up well, the tea has very little bitterness and astringency making it more versatile than your usual black.

I do want to see more opinions on this one, and as much as I like it, there are a few other teas that are comparable to this one at occasionally cheaper prices. The $5.99 per 25 grams is a little steep, but closer to average for what I have seen for this type of tea. I probably won’t order it again but I definitely cannot say “No” if I am offered it again, and I think that everyone exploring Taiwaneese tea should try this kind of black at least once in their lifetime.

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First Off, Current Targets:

Whispering Pines Alice
Good Luxurious Work Teas
Wang Family’s Jasmine Shanlinxi
Spring, Winter Taiwan High Mountain Oolongs

Dislikes: Heavy Tannin, Astringency, Bitterness, or Fake Flavor, Overly herby herbal or aged teas

Picky with: Higher Oxidation Oolongs, Red Oolongs (Some I love, others give me headaches or are almost too sweet), Mint Teas

Currently, my stash is overflowing. Among my favorites are What-Cha’s Lishan Black, Amber Gaba Oolong, Lishan Oolong, Qilan Oolong, White Rhino, Kenya Silver Needle, Tong Mu Lapsang Black (Unsmoked); Whispering Pines Alice, Taiwanese Assam, Wang’s Shanlinxi, Cuifeng, Dayuling, Jasmine Shan Lin Xi; Beautiful Taiwan Tea Co.“Old Style” Dong Ding, Mandala Milk Oolong; Paru’s Milk Oolong


I am an MSU graduate, and current alternative ed. high school social studies and history teacher. I formerly minored in anthropology, and I love Egyptian and classical history. I love to read, write, draw, paint, sculpt, fence(with a sword), practice calisthenics on rings, lift weights, workout, relax, and drink a cuppa tea…or twenty.

I’ve been drinking green and black teas ever since I was little living in Hawaii. Eastern Asian influence was prominent with my friends and where I grew up, so I’ve been exposed to some tea culture at a young age. I’ve come a long way since I began on steepster and now drink most teas gong fu, especially oolong. Any tea that is naturally creamy, fruity, or sweet without a lot of added flavoring ranks as a must have for me. I also love black teas and dark oolongs with the elusive “cocoa” note. My favorites are lighter Earl Greys, some white teas like What-Cha’s Kenyan offerings, most Hong-Cha’s, darker Darjeelings, almost anything from Nepal, Green Shan Lin Xi’s, and Greener Dong Dings. I’m in the process of trying Alishan’s. I also tend to really enjoy Yunnan Black or Red teas and white teas. I’m pickier with other teas like chamomile, green teas, and Masalas among several.

I used to give ratings, but now I only rate teas that have a strong impression on me. If I really like it, I’ll write it down.

I’ll enjoy a tea almost no matter what, even if the purpose is more medicinal, for it is my truest vice and addiction.


Michigan, USA

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