What are the different grades of Lapsang Souchong tea?

by Tea

Lapsang Souchong tea is a unique and flavorful type of Chinese black tea that has been around since the 17th century. This smoky tea has become popular in many parts of the world and is available in several different grades.

The grades of Lapsang Souchong are determined by the size and shape of the leaves as well as the intensity of the smoky flavor. The most common grades are Extra Special, Special, and Standard.

Extra Special grade Lapsang Souchong contains large leaves with a strong smoky taste. This grade is generally considered to be the highest quality and most expensive type of Lapsang Souchong.

Special grade Lapsang Souchong is slightly lower quality than Extra Special grade and has medium-sized leaves with a milder smoky flavor.

Standard grade Lapsang Souchong is the lowest grade with small leaves and a light smoky flavor. It is also typically the least expensive type of Lapsang Souchong tea.Lapsang Souchong tea is a unique and distinct black tea that has been enjoyed for centuries. It originates from the Wuyi mountain region of China’s Fujian province, and is one of the most popular teas in China. It is known for its smoky aroma and flavor due to the way it is processed.

The leaves are smoked over pinewood fires, which gives it its unique smoky taste. This type of processing also results in a darker color, with an amber liquor when brewed. The flavors can range from sweet to slightly bitter, depending on how long the leaves are smoked and how they are brewed.

When brewing Lapsang Souchong tea, it’s important to use water that is not boiling hot, as this can result in a bitter taste. To achieve the best flavor, steep 1-2 teaspoons of tea leaves in 8 ounces of hot (not boiling) water for 3-5 minutes. For an even stronger flavor, use more leaves or steep for longer. Enjoy this unique and flavorful cup of tea!

Origin of Lapsang Souchong Tea

Lapsang Souchong tea is a unique tea that is made from black tea leaves that have been smoked over pinewood fires. This type of tea has a distinct smoky taste and aroma that sets it apart from other teas. It is believed to have originated in the Fujian Province of China during the Qing Dynasty. The story goes that, during a time of war, a group of refugees fleeing the area stopped at a tea factory to take shelter. To speed up the drying process, they used pine wood fires to smoke the tea leaves, and thus created Lapsang Souchong tea.

The unique flavor and aroma of Lapsang Souchong quickly gained popularity and spread throughout China and other parts of Asia. Over time, it became one of the most popular teas in China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau. Today, it is known around the world as one of the most distinctive teas available. It has become a favorite among connoisseurs for its smoky flavor and aroma.

Lapsang Souchong is usually made with black tea leaves that are harvested from Camellia sinensis var assamica or Camellia sinensis var sinensis plants. The leaves are withered over pinewood fires and then allowed to ferment before being dried again with more smoke. This process gives the tea its signature smoky taste and aroma.

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The popularity of Lapsang Souchong continues to grow as more people discover this unique type of tea. While it may not be everybody’s cup of tea, those who enjoy its smoky flavor will appreciate its unique history and flavor profile.

History of Lapsang Souchong Tea

Lapsang Souchong is a type of Chinese black tea originally produced in the Wuyi Mountains located in the Fujian Province of China. It is one of the most famous and traditional teas in the world with a history dating back to the early 17th century. The tea was originally created by accident when tea makers had to quickly dry their harvested leaves to avoid spoilage from an oncoming rainstorm. This process gave the tea its unique smoky flavor, which has been popular ever since.

Taste and Aroma

Lapsang Souchong is known for its strong, smoky flavor and aroma, which comes from its unique drying process. The leaves are smoked over pinewood fires, resulting in a deep, smoky aroma that can be quite strong for some people. The taste is equally strong with a distinct smokiness accompanied by a hint of sweetness. The taste varies greatly depending on how long it was smoked and how it was brewed, but overall it has a very bold flavor that some people find too intense.

Health Benefits

Lapsang Souchong tea has many potential health benefits due to its high levels of antioxidants, polyphenols, and other compounds found in black tea. Studies have found that drinking black tea may help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, improve digestive health, boost immunity, and even help protect against certain types of cancer. It can also help promote weight loss by increasing metabolism and aiding digestion.

Brewing Instructions

Brewing Lapsang Souchong correctly is important for achieving its full flavor profile. To brew this type of tea correctly you should start by heating water until it reaches a rolling boil (212°F). Then add 1 teaspoon of loose leaf Lapsang Souchong per cup into an infuser or teapot and pour hot water over it. Allow the tea to steep for 3-5 minutes before removing the infuser or straining out any loose leaves. Finally add sugar or honey to taste if desired and enjoy your perfect cup of Lapsang Souchong!

Types of Processing for Lapsang Souchong Tea

Lapsang Souchong tea is a type of Chinese black tea, which is processed in a unique way. The leaves are dried over pine or cedar wood fires, giving the tea its distinct smoky flavour. In addition to this initial step, other processes are involved in the production of Lapsang Souchong tea. These processes include withering, rolling and oxidizing.


The first step in the processing of Lapsang Souchong tea is withering. This involves placing the tea leaves in a cool and humid environment for several hours or days. This allows the leaves to lose some of their moisture content and become soft and pliable.


Once the leaves have been withered, they are rolled into small pellets or twisted into thin strips. Rolling helps to break down the cell walls of the leaves and release some of their natural oils and flavours.


The final step in processing Lapsang Souchong tea is oxidization. During this process, oxygen is added to the leaves, which turns them from green to black in colour and gives them their distinctive smoky flavour. Oxidization also helps to preserve the flavour and aroma of the tea for a longer period of time.

Different Grades of Lapsang Souchong Tea

Lapsang Souchong is a unique smoked tea that is made from black tea leaves. It has a robust, smoky flavor that sets it apart from other teas. The tea is grown in the Fujian province of China, and the leaves are smoked over pine wood fires to give it its distinct flavor. There are several different grades of Lapsang Souchong, each with its own characteristics.

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The most common grade of Lapsang Souchong is the Standard Grade. This grade has a strong smoky flavor with a hint of sweetness. The leaves are slightly smaller than other grades, and the flavor can be quite intense. It is usually used in blends to add depth and complexity to the flavor profile.

The Superior Grade is made from larger leaves and has a more subtle smoky flavor than the Standard Grade. The flavor is still intense but much smoother and more balanced than the Standard Grade. This grade has a more delicate aroma than other grades and it makes an excellent addition to any blend or as a stand-alone tea.

The Imperial Grade is considered to be one of the highest quality grades of Lapsang Souchong available. It has a very intense smoky aroma but with less tannins than lower grades, creating a smooth and balanced cup with complex flavors. This grade can be enjoyed on its own or blended with other teas for an even deeper experience.

Finally, there is the Premium Grade which is made from exceptionally large leaves that have been carefully selected for their quality and aroma. This grade has an incredibly smooth taste with hints of sweet tobacco flavors and undertones of pine wood smoke. It makes an excellent choice for those who want to experience the full depth and complexity of this unique smoked tea.

No matter which grade you choose, Lapsang Souchong will always have its distinctive smoky aroma and taste that sets it apart from other types of tea

Good Aroma

When evaluating the quality of lapsang souchong tea, the first criteria to consider is its aroma. A good lapsang souchong tea should have a strong smoky aroma, which is distinctive and pleasing. The aroma should be consistent with no off-flavors or odors. This tea has a unique and distinct smoky flavor that comes from the traditional Chinese method of drying the leaves over burning pine chips. To ensure that the aroma is of good quality, it is important to check if it has been dried correctly and if any other external odors have been introduced into the tea.

Good Color

The next criteria when evaluating the quality of lapsang souchong tea is its color. It should be a deep red-brown color with a slight yellowish hue. The color should not be overly bright nor dark and it should not have any blemishes or discoloration. This indicates that the tea was properly dried without any external influences such as smoke or other chemicals that could affect its color.

Good Flavor

The flavor of lapsang souchong tea is another important factor in evaluating its quality. It should have a strong smoky flavor with subtle sweetness and earthy notes. The flavor should be balanced and not overly bitter nor sour. A good quality lapsang souchong will also have a lingering aftertaste that lingers on the palate for some time.

Good Texture

The texture of lapsang souchong tea is also an important factor in determining its quality. It should be smooth and silky with no grit or astringency present. The leaves should feel soft yet firm when touched, indicating that they were properly processed and stored without any external influences such as moisture or heat damage.

Overall Quality Score

Finally, all these factors must be taken into consideration when evaluating the overall quality score of lapsang souchong tea. The combination of these criteria will help determine whether the tea meets certain standards of excellence and can be considered to be of high-quality or not. A higher overall score indicates better quality while lower scores indicate lower quality overall.

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Preparation and Brewing Method for Lapsang Souchong Tea

Lapsang Souchong is a type of Chinese black tea that has a unique smoky flavor. It is produced through a complex process that involves smoking the leaves over pine wood. The result of this process is a robust and flavorful tea that can be prepared using a few different methods. Here are some tips on how to prepare and brew Lapsang Souchong tea:


To prepare Lapsang Souchong, you will need:

  • A tea kettle or pot
  • Tea filter or strainer
  • Tea cups or mugs


Begin by filling the kettle or pot with fresh, cold water and bringing it to a boil. Once the water is boiling, take it off the heat and let it cool for about 30 seconds. This will help ensure that the tea does not become too bitter from being steeped in boiling water. Next, add 1 teaspoon of loose-leaf Lapsang Souchong tea to the filter or strainer, then place it into your teacup or mug. Slowly pour the hot water into your cup until it reaches about 3/4 full, then let it steep for about 2-3 minutes before discarding the filter or strainer. Finally, add any desired sweeteners such as honey or sugar if desired, then enjoy your cup of freshly brewed Lapsang Souchong!

Health Benefits Associated with Drinking Lapsang Souchong Tea

Lapsang Souchong is a type of Chinese black tea that has a unique smoky flavor. It is made by drying the leaves over pinewood fires, and this unique process gives the tea its characteristic smoky flavor. In addition to its unique flavor, Lapsang Souchong has many health benefits. Here are some of the most notable:

  • Improved Digestion – Lapsang Souchong contains polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants that can help improve digestion. Polyphenols also help reduce inflammation in the digestive tract, which can lead to better overall health.
  • Lower Blood Pressure – The polyphenols in Lapsang Souchong can also help lower blood pressure by relaxing blood vessels and improving overall circulation.
  • Boosts Immune System – The catechins found in Lapsang Souchong can help boost the immune system and fight off infections. Catechins are powerful antioxidants that can help protect cells from damage.
  • Promotes Weight Loss – Caffeine found in Lapsang Souchong can help increase metabolism, which in turn can lead to weight loss. Caffeine also helps suppress appetite and reduce cravings for unhealthy foods.

In addition to these health benefits, drinking Lapsang Souchong has been linked with improved mental clarity and focus. The unique flavor of this tea is often enjoyed as a way to relax after a long day or to ease stress and anxiety. So if you’re looking for a delicious way to improve your health and well-being, give Lapsang Souchong tea a try!


Lapsang Souchong is an amazing tea that has been around for centuries. It is a unique, smoky-flavored black tea that is enjoyed around the world. There are five different grades of Lapsang Souchong tea, ranging from low grade to high grade. Low grade teas have a less intense flavor and aroma than higher grade teas, while higher grade teas have a more intense flavor and aroma. All grades of Lapsang Souchong can be enjoyed either hot or iced.

Whether you prefer low or high grade Lapsang Souchong, it is important to remember to purchase your tea from a reputable source. Doing so will ensure that you receive a quality product that has been produced with care and attention. Enjoy your Lapsang Souchong with friends and family, and savor the unique flavor of this amazing tea!



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