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Black Tea

Black Tea | Imperial Teas

The tea which we refer to as 'black' in the west encompasses a vast array of flavours born from the process known as 'oxidation'. It is the type of tea we are most familiar with and is broadly drunk in the U.K with milk. In other countries, many of these teas, especially those as light as First Flush Darjeeling are taken without, or sometimes with lemon or orange to taste. There are no rules and should someone find they enjoy their tea made differently to our recommendations that is the best way to enjoy it. Oxidation, a skilfully controlled process, takes place after raw, green tea leaves are rolled or macerated to break down the cell walls. A chemical reaction takes place which converts the catechins found in green tea into theaflavins and thearubigins. These compounds give the tea a brisk, bright taste, depth, body and its yellow through to orange-red colour. In China they call our 'black', 'red' tea. By and large this is a closer description of the colour of the infused liquor, the pale yellow of Darjeeling First Flush aside. My recommendation for preparing this tea to be taken with milk is to use 1g per 100ml of water and to allow 5 minutes to brew. If taking it without milk use a little less tea and infuse for just 2 minutes.
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  1. Fujian Black Rock Xi Xuan Black Tea

    Fujian Black Rock Xi Xuan Black Tea

    This black tea is a relative newcomer to the roster and is produced on an ‘oolong’ cultivar, meaning that it is a tea of great complexity, is strongly aromatic and very light in body. Whilst it does not produce dark liquor it is delicious taken with milk as well as black. The creaminess of milk combines with the naturally occurring flavour of honey and caramel that this tea possesses. Learn More
    From £11.00

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  2. Keemun Monkey King Spring Gold Black Tea

    Keemun Monkey King Spring Gold Black Tea

    This is one of the rarest and finest of China's black teas, indeed the world's. It is a tea master produced, organically grown, long tender leaf variety from the Lion Mt. in Qi'Men with a light bodied, honey-sweet, chocolate malt infusion. It is a tea with a pronounced flavour yet with very little tannin and makes a good afternoon or early evening tea. It is made with the first golden down covered buds of spring, full of nutrition, picked before the Chinese Qing Ming festival. To put this wonderful tea's rarity into context it would make just 200,000 of the U.K's yearly consumption of 60,225,000,000 cups! Remember this is just the U.K, my calculator didn't have enough digits to work out the world's consumption! We can never get enough of this tea to last the year so try it while you can. Learn More
    From £12.00

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  3. Georgia Wild Tea Tree Black Tea

    Georgia Wild Tea Tree Black Tea

    This very rare tea grows wild in the woods of Georgia, near the Mtirala National Park, just a few kilometres from the Black Sea. These hand-produced teas have the quality of some of the finest teas in the world grown in Taiwan and are similar in complexity. The soft, infusion almost without any bitterness has nuances of wild berry, maple, pine, malt, raisins, honey, cocoa, caramel, apple, chestnut and spice. The long, wiry matt black leaves also look like those of Taiwanese teas, the larger leaf size reflecting the fact they are produced on tea trees rather than bushes. Many of these tea trees were planted in the 19th century and until recently were not harvested. The rich forest soil, the surrounding trees offering shade mean that these wild trees produce naturally high quality material for artisan tea makers to express. Learn More
    From £13.00

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  4. Father's Time Black Tea

    Father's Time Black Tea

    This is a tea to savour, whether as a treat for yourself or a gift from a loved one. We use a beautiful, golden tipped tea from the birthplace of tea Mount Meng Ding. It has a rich flavour, like cocoa and rose, almost Turkish Delight! This is balanced by a tea grown in primaeval forests in another province of China, near the Lancang River, that is smooth, toffee-like, with hints of sweet tobacco and honey. The third part has a complex flavour and an astonishing, floral and fruity fragrance. Perfect gift for Father's Day! Or just to say I love you! Even if it's to yourself! Learn More
    From £14.00

    Earn 14 loyalty points.

  5. A Taste of Honey Black Tea

    A Taste of Honey Black Tea

    A special blend of three of the world's best black teas that have a unique flavour profile that give the infusion a natural taste of wild honey. Malt, spice, fruit, honeysuckle, peach, nectarine and chocolate notes are among the many that compete for recognition as the tea reveals its character seemingly in waves upon the tongue. Learn More
    From £15.00

    Earn 15 loyalty points.

  6. Black Velvet Black Tea

    Black Velvet Black Tea

    A velvety smooth blend of three exquisite teas. The deep red, lingering liquor of one of the components, carries a strong fragrance and flavour of exotic spice. Another has a strong red grape aroma in the dry leaves with a raisin-like flavour in the cup that also carries subtle notes of bergamot and mint. The third part delivers dark chocolate, rose, peach, and honey. Learn More
    From £15.00

    Earn 15 loyalty points.

  7. Fuchow Golden Needle Black Tea

    Fuchow Golden Needle Black Tea

    An unusual flat, smooth leaf in the style of Long Jing green tea, that is worked by hand in a wok. It grows on the 'big leaf' tea tree, in common with our Tea of Life, in the Fujian Province. A rich tasting, fruity liquor with a lingering aroma of chocolate and fresh raspberries. Learn More
    From £15.00

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  8. Fuchow Monkey King Black Tea

    Fuchow Monkey King Black Tea

    This is the best grade of the black teas called Fuchow, hence the name 'Monkey King'. You can tell from its appearance with the abundant tips and golden hairs that it will be a rich, smooth tea with a complex character. It is predominantly malty in character with notes of cocoa and according to some of our customers a hint of ginger. Extremely exclusive and a current Imperial favourite. Learn More
    From £15.00

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  9. Jin Guanyin Golden Goddess of Mercy Black Tea

    Jin Guanyin Golden Goddess of Mercy Black Tea

    This rare tea treasure is from the fertile gardens in the high mountains of Fujian province. It is a new variety of black tea produced from a new hybrid created to produce a new type of oolong tea. The idea was to combine the buttery, alpine character of Tie Guan Yin with the osmanthus scent of Huang Jin Gui. The tightly twisted, black leaf with fine silvery-gold tips gives a deliciously sweet, smooth, exceptionally flavoured drink with hints of fruit and pepper. It is made entirely by hand from young tips that are withered, twisted, oxidised then dried and shaped before the final sorting is done. Learn More
    From £16.00

    Earn 16 loyalty points.

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