Even though South Korea has a very strong tea tradition, Korean teas are still very rare in Europe. With its gentle fresh baked cocoa scent, Balhyocha Korean black tea is an amazing comfort tea that shouldn’t be missed out by any true tea lover.
Only recently I realized I am a huge fan of South Korean tea. Unfortunately, I only got a chance to explore South Korean teas some two years ago, as they are still quite difficult to find in Europe, and there are only a handful of tea vendors selling Korean tea directly from Korea. Tea Repertoire from London offers quite a few South Korean teas. I have received a few samples from them, including this amazing Balhyocha Korean black tea.
Tea Vendor: Tea Repertoire (UK)
Type: Korean black tea
Wild Leaves of Balhyocha Korean Black Tea
This Korean black tea is made from wild tea bushes grown on Jiri Moutain. This tea has it all – from scent of dry leaves to scent of liquor itself, to beautiful soothing and comforting feeling after (and during!) drinking. Dry leaves are greyish black-brown, gently twisted thin stripes, with a lot of stalks. This tea has an amazing deep sweet roasted cocoa scent that will win you over in just one sniff. There is genuine deep freshness in the background. Imagine soothing cocoa scent with deep sweetness and rejuvenating freshness, and you might get the idea why I call this tea a comfort tea. Price is £12.40 for 25 grams.
Wild Brewing for Comforting Feeling
Brewing: 4 grams, 150 ml, 95 degrees Celsius, 60, 45, 120 sec
Scent of this Korean black tea is lingering on the border of light and strong. There is no bitterness at all. Scent is amazingly strong, very deep, sweet, cocoa meets caramel, light roasted notes, freshly baked bread and a bit of woodsy feeling. There is a light Japanese-black-tea feeling after drinking. There is really absolutely no bitterness in this tea, which makes it so easy to drink. Freshness is another great characteristic, not so easily found in many black teas. It loses some of the cocoa undertones in subsequent infusions, but pretty much everything else stays the same. There is a lot of sweetness and freshness in all of them. Color is between cooper and light brown.
Wet leaves look quite elegant, with long thin stalks and long thin leaves. There are quite a bit of greenish leaves as well, which shows this tea is not fully oxidized. I love this tea. It’s definitely one of those teas that will always make you happy and never disappoint you. It’s one of those teas you should drink when you are feeling a bit down or need a hug in a cup.