Lapsang Souchong - A Mini Guide

One tea that always gets a lot of attention in the tea world is Lapsang Souchong. Its smoky and aromatic flavour is among the favourites for a lot of households around the world. But where does it come from and how does it get its ever so iconic flavour? Let's look into it!


If you are looking for traditional Lapsang Souchong, you will need to travel to the Wuyi Mountains in Fujian Province, China. From a translation point of view, Lapsang roughly translates to “smoked variety” in Fuzhou dialect and “Souchong” refers to the fourth or fifth leaf of the Camellia Sinensis plant used in production.


Smoky Lapsang Souchong gets its distinct smoky flavour because it is dried over fires of resin-sweet pinewood. This technique was apparently discovered by accident back in the 16th century! After a travelling army spent the night in tea warehouses, there was only one thing to save the tea from the stench: smoking it over local pinewood. This caught on to European traders who soon developed a taste for it. This then became Lapsang Souchong, which 5 centuries later is still a popular beverage to choose in a more concentrated market.


From a taste point of view, Lapsang Souchong is primarily known for its smoky flavour. But don’t let that sway you, as because of the unique oxidation process, it also has a sweet and refreshing flavour which compliments its smoky tones very nicely.


If you want to appreciate the essence of Lapsang Souchong tea in its finest form, we recommend that the water temperature should be about 90℃. Too much above or below this temperature can sometimes throw the taste off, so brew carefully!


If you love the sound of Lapsang Souchong, you can purchase some of Nelson & Norfolk’s own by clicking here.


Check out our other blogs by clicking here if you’d like to read more on the world of tea and coffee.


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