A Tea Lovers Recommendations For The Best Black Teas

Black teas are one of the most versatile brews in the world of teas, coming in a large selection of flavors and aromas that cater to many different types of palates. Even if you just stick to black teas, there are endless varieties out there for you to explore.

The type of black tea you enjoy most depends on the kind of flavor profiles you prefer. Someone who enjoys robust flavors might stick to Assam or Sri Lankan black teas, while someone who enjoys muscatel notes might lean towards Darjeeling teas. Lovers of Nepal teas often compliment the delicacy and nuanced floral notes of Nepal teas. 

An image of a tea farm.

At Nepal Tea Collective, we like to support your tea journey by recommending teas that suit your flavor preferences. In this blog, we’ll recommend some black teas that you might enjoy. 

We also hope you’ll come across teas that pique your interest, for the path to becoming a true tea connoisseur is trying flavor notes outside of your comfort zone! In any case, happy reading and happy sipping! 

Best Black Tea Picks for Dark, Malty, Rich Flavors: 

The most popular black teas are often those that are dark, strong, and full-bodied. These are the teas that can be enjoyed with milk or cream and sugar stirred in, or with a few drops of lime squeezed in. If you enjoy bold black teas, here are some recommendations for you: 

Assam Black Tea: 

Assam black teas are grown in the Assam region in India, a region known for its hot, humid climates and low elevations. Assam teas are distinct at first glance — with large, glossy tea leaves distinguishing them from other cultivars. Once plucked, these tea leaves are highly processed and turn into an intensely dark tea with a strong and brisk flavor with undertones of malt. Assam teas make a great morning tea and are superb with milk and sugar. 

Kanchanjangha Noir Black Tea: 

Kanchanjangha Noir - Premium Black655222977083

Kanchanjangha Noir is a black tea by Nepal Tea Collective, named after the peak, Mt. Kanchanjangha, that overlooks the farms where this tea is grown. Though this black tea comes from high-elevation farms in Eastern Nepal, its finely processed leaves offer both a nuanced flavor profile as well as dark and heavy notes of dark chocolate, cherries, and malt. Though this tea is best without any additives, it can still make for a delicious morning brew for those who enjoy a bold black tea.

Purchase a pack of Kanchanjangha Noir and start sipping away today. 

Yunnan Black Tea (Dianhong):

With an earthy and spicy flavor profile, layered with notes of chocolate and dried fruit, Yunnan black tea is one of the most popular Chinese ‘red teas’. Its leaves have a lovely golden hue and brew into a dark liquor that is smooth and fragrant. For those who enjoy a complex and rich tea with hints of sweetness, we strongly recommend Yunnan black tea. 

Ceylon Black Tea

Ceylon Black teas from Sri Lanka have a bright flavor profile with mild astringency. Though this tea is often enjoyed with milk and sugar, its comparatively mellow flavor allows you to enjoy it plain as well. We also recommend the smooth Ceylon black tea with a hint of lime to enhance its brisk and refreshing flavor notes. 

Best Black Tea Picks for Delicate, Aromatic, Floral Flavors: 

Most tea lovers who prefer delicate, nuanced, and fresh aromas lean towards white teas, which have pale liquors and a fresh, complex flavor profile. However, certain black teas from Darjeeling and Nepal also offer the same nuance, leaving smooth and lingering impressions on your palate. If you enjoy these kinds of flavors, here are some great options: 

If you like teas with delicate, fragrant aromas, Darjeeling and certain Nepali black teas are excellent options.

Darjeeling First Flush: 

Heralded as the ‘Champagne of teas’, Darjeeling teas are often referred to as some of the best black teas in the world. The misty climates, sloping tea gardens, and tea terraces around beautiful white orchard groves impart smooth, delicate, and extremely fragrant flavor profiles to  Darjeeling teas, particularly its Spring harvest, known as the Darjeeling first flush black teas. 

Darjeeling first flush black teas have a green hue, as they undergo a production process that preserves their spring flavors. If you enjoy delicate, nuanced, and extremely fresh spring flavors, we suggest you try the Spring harvest of Darjeeling teas. 

Nepal First Flush: 

Nepal’s first flush teas, also the spring harvest black teas plucked and crafted from high-elevation tea gardens of Nepal, offer a deeply aromatic, delicate, and fresh flavor profile. With green leaves that brew into a pale liquor redolent with the fragrance of Himalayan spring wildflowers, Nepal's first flush black teas are a must-try for people who enjoy delicate and naturally perfumed black teas. 

Everest Black Tea: 

Harvested from the highest elevation tea gardens in the world, Nepal Tea Collective’s Everest Black teas are also reminiscent of the delicate, pale, and complex flavor profiles of first flush teas — even though these black teas aren’t always harvested during the springtime. Growing in the fresh, mineral-rich soil of the Everest region in Nepal, these tea leaves are nourished by snow-melt mountain waters and Himalayan monsoons, which give them their gentle and floral complexity. Due to the cold weather and mountain mists that block even the meekest sunlight, these leaves grow incredibly slowly. As a result, every leaf that makes up the Everest Black tea has rich concentrations of flavor compounds, giving rise to nuanced tastes without any trace of bitterness. 

Rose Label Reserve Black Tea: 

Rose Label Reserve black tea is on the richer side of our list of delicate black tea flavors, but it is one of the most rare and precious teas in the world. Rose Label Reserve is an early-summer harvest black tea, hand-plucked from rare tea cultivars and processed to exude a truly unique, completely natural roseate flavor profile. These black tea leaves smell just like fresh roses, without any rose additives at all! Layered by lingering flavor notes of mint and eucalyptus, the Rose Label Reserve black tea is one of our best recommendations for lovers of floral black teas. 

Best Black Tea Picks for Fruity, Muscatel Flavors: 

Summertime can give rise to some of the best fruity flavor notes in black teas, particularly in black teas grown on high-elevation farms, whose natural smoothness is complemented by grape-like flavors. Here are some of our best fruity black tea recommendations. 

Darjeeling Black Tea Second Flush: 

Darjeeling black tea’s floral and fruity notes have a special, pronounced muscatel grape-like characteristic. While the first flush is gentle and floral, the second flush has richer, grape-like flavor notes with a full, round body that leaves a smoothness on your palate. If you like a fruity sweetness in your teas, we recommend the summer harvests from Darjeeling. 

KTE Muscatel Black Tea: 

KTE Muscatel by Nepal Tea Collective also offers a pronounced muscatel grape flavor and aroma, comparable to a muscatel vinery. This smooth and fruity black tea is also a summer or monsoon harvest from the high-elevation farms in Nepal, it’s grape notes arising from the presence of small sap-sucking insects called thrips. To protect themselves from the damage caused by these insects, summer tea leaves produce the compound terpene, which is what produces the delicious muscatel grape flavor notes. 

Best Black Tea Picks for Sweet, Caramel and Honeyed teas: 

You don’t always have to reach for a sweetener to enjoy a sweet brew. Some black teas are naturally sweet and mellow. Here are some recommendations: 

Kumari Gold Black Tea: 

Kumari Gold Black tea is one of our best picks and one of Nepal Tea Collective’s most favored black teas. Indeed, Kumari Gold has one of the highest staff orders in the Nepal Tea Collective team — which goes to show just how much of a sweet tooth our team has! 

A gentle black tea crafted to have golden hues, Kumari Gold has flavor notes of honey, caramel, and a subtle malty finish. If you enjoy a sweet, balanced, and light black tea without any sweeteners, we recommend you try out our Kumari Gold black tea!

Bring a pack of Kumari Gold to your home today. 

Nepali Golden Black Tea: 

Celebrated for its smooth and round body and natural creamy sweetness, Nepali Golden Black tea has flavor notes of milk chocolate, honey, and malt. We highly recommend this tea as a great afternoon pick-me-up, especially on a rainy day. 

Best Black Tea Picks for Smoky and Roasted Flavors: 

Many of the most interesting black teas are those with smoky flavor notes. While it can take some time and a few tries to get used to, there’s nothing like black tea that has been perfected to a smoky finish, with hints of pine or bamboo over which they are smoked. Two of our best recommendations are: 

Lapsang Souchong: 

This Chinese black tea from the Wuyi region is known for its distinctive smoky flavor, achieved by drying the leaves over pinewood fires. This strong and fiery tea is extremely warming, perfect for winters and for black tea lovers who revel in intense flavors. 

Keemun Black Tea: 

Keemun Black tea is often used in English Breakfast blends, offering a milder flavor profile than the intense Lapsang Souchong. This Chinese black tea offers a gentler fruity and floral flavor profile, with a slight but lingering smoky aftertaste. Keemun can be enjoyed on its own, or with milk and sugar. If you enjoy a complex aroma and flavor profile with your breakfast, we highly recommend you try the Keemun black tea. 

To Conclude, We Recommend You Try Something New: 

While sticking to black tea flavors that you enjoy is perfectly valid, you can expand and train your palate by leaving your tea comfort zone and trying the opposite of what you usually enjoy! For example, if you generally go for a delicate and light brew, why not try the intense experience of a good Lapsang Souchong? 

As a team of tea connoisseurs, our main recommendation to you is to try new teas in your tea journey, and drink far and wide! And anytime you want to return to the basics, your favorite black tea flavors will always be waiting for you!

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