Year of the Bull Noir 2021 Spring Dianhong Black Tea



Made from the same Yiwu material as our yearly raw puer cake of the same name, this tea is a bit of an experimental offering for 2021. This is the first time we’ve processed it as a black tea, and this was done using machine roasting, as opposed to “shaihong” (sun baked) that is common among smaller producers in Yunnnan. We personally prefer machine roasted black for their consistency and control.

We’ll be monitoring how it holds up over the next year to decide whether or not this can develop into a bigger production for future years, but we’d like to enroll your help in evaluating it. In other words, don’t blame us if you hate it a few months later, because we told you it’s experimental.

But seriously, so far so good. This tea is sweet and smooth without any noticeable bitter or sour notes. A gentle roastiness and fruity sweetness give this tea a nice dynamic.

For those not familiar with the raw puer version of this tea, the material used for this comes from ~45 year old “left to grow” trees in Yiwu. These former plantation trees have been left to grow in as natural an environment as possible, with no pesticides, fertilizer, weed killer or over picking. The result is lower overall output, but much, much better quality and value in terms of what is picked.

This tea is only available in 100g sizes. The 200g size is simply 2 x 100g tins at a slightly better price.


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4 reviews for Year of the Bull Noir 2021 Spring Dianhong Black Tea

  1. 5 out of 5

    dhfarber (verified owner)

    Straightforward malty delicious daily drinker black tea. Reminds me a lot of some “gold thread” teas in flavor. Low bitterness, no sourness, some roastiness. Lasts for many infusions. A crowd-pleaser and a great value.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Miguel (verified owner)

    Delicious daily drinker that punches well above it’s price. Dhfarber described it perfectly. The presentation of this tea is stunning, from the gorgeous leaves to the wonderful tin it comes in. Easily a repeat purchase.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Daniel969 (verified owner)

    First few times I tried this tea I was not sure if I liked it or not… I brew it as I brew most of my black teas, at a temperature of around 90°C, but the taste was never quite on what I was expecting! One day I was boiling water at higher temperatures, having in mind to brew a Oolong, then I saw the Bull Noir thin on the shelve and decided to try it once again. I didn’t realise the water was on 95°C and I was stunned by the flavor and aromas that hit me on the first brew!!! Malty, sweet, thick and roasty notes filled my mouth and palate in an amazing way! The same leaves last up to fifth brew before loosing strenght, and I was ablemto go all the way to height brew!
    A must have tea for a great evening session! I am glad I ordered 200g, it might last until next order!

  4. 5 out of 5

    wingnut4096 (verified owner)

    Pretty cool take on dianhong. In most ways it’s what you would expec – malty, full bodied, a bit chocolatey, creamy mouthfeel – but it’s also got an interesting bit of minerality and a slightly funky fruitiness to it. I don’t drink a ton of black tea but this is definitely one I’m always looking forward to coming back to. I’ve generally preffered this to Bitterleaf’s other black tea offerings that I’ve tried.

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