In China, black tea is called red tea for the color of the brew, and not the color of the leaves. It is also not as popular there as green and oolong teas are. China mainly has the black teas for export. In fact, according to The Story of Tea, black tea constitutes only 13% of their tea production. (Heiss, 129)
The tea looks like the name implies, a dark tea with golden tips. It is described as having a malty taste, and I smell the malt scent in the tin. The leaves are long and twisted, with the pretty golden tips. When brewed the leaves turn a red-brown color and smell slightly floral.
The flavor is floral to me as well, although it is not described that way in the description on the tin. It is described as a “sweet” tea, which is my experience as well. It is lighter than the teas I am accustomed to drinking, so my instinct is to say that it is not as flavorful, but it is, it’s just different. I experience the maltiness as an aftertaste that is pleasant, but overall, I’m not sure I like this tea. I find myself wanting it to be something it’s not.
So for today, I will enjoy what is.
I checked the Peet’s website, and this tea is no longer available, but I’ve included a link to their other China black teas. Be sure to check out their rare teas, too.