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Reaping Strike - Bright Lapsang Souchong (Smoked Black Tea)

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Reaping Strike - Bright Lapsang Souchong
Xingchun, Fujian, China

The Reaping Strike is a traditional lapsang souchong, as traditional as you can get. Bright smoky notes with a medium smoke overtone and a medium-dark body. Smooth and smoky.

The Reaping Strike is a lapsang as traditional as we could find. It's a black tea from Fujian, China, specifically from Xingchun county, that is made in classic fashion. They take tea leaves grown in the Wuyi Mountains at high elevation, grown in a nature reserve surrounded by wild pine trees and constantly bathed in mists as they grow. They wither the leaves over fires made of pine & cypress wood, then press them into a wooden barrel with a cloth covering to oxidize. After proper oxidation, they fire the leaves and hang them in bamboo baskets over wild pine fires to absorb the rich smoky flavors.

The combination of smoke-withering and smoke-drying give the Reaping Strike a particular deep, smoky flavor with plenty of intricacies to taste within it, and the misty growing season makes the leaves smooth and elegant in flavor, since the leaves are rarely without moisture while growing, removing any harshness from the growing cycle. The result is a tea that, at least with lapsang drinkers, can't miss with its deep, complex flavors, varying smoky flavor with crazy depth, and elegant body to taste through.

The Name

Reaping Strike, our first Fighter tea, is named for an ability carried by nearly every Fighter in the 4th Edition of Dungeons & Dragons. D&D 4e is marked by its deep dive into combat systems to make combat a little more accessible, customizable, and interesting by giving every class abilities to use rather than simple feats and spells. This system marked for, in Gwen's opinion, the first time in D&D's history that Barbarians had more to do than rage and hit things, and Fighters especially had more to do than say "I hit it" and "I guess I hit it again." 4e gave them an improved function Cleave and Shield Feint and Comeback Strike at first level, making swinging a sword interesting and unique for the first time in D&D's history. And none quite so quintessential as the Reaping Strike.

A simple ability that made your attack hit even on a miss, giving fighters the power to hit enemies, keep their attention, and hold them reliably. Every fighter had this in their repertoire, since it was a simple, clean ability that improved every basic hit you wanted. This tea is named for Reaping Strike because it hits hard with heavy smoke, leaves a mark as you taste the smoke on your tongue long after you've sipped the tea, and is so smooth, so elegant, so complex that any lapsang drinker, even typical black tea drinkers, can appreciate its complexity beyond a simple lapsang souchong. It has the character of a unique, interesting black tea despite being pigeonholed into "smoked tea" that so many scoff at or ignore. Long story short, it hits hard, leaves a mark, and never misses. Just like Reaping Strike.

Brewing Suggestions

  • Use 7g (≈1 tbsp) of leaf per ½ liter (≈17 oz) of water.
  • Use boiling (100°C/212°F) water
  • Steep for 3 minutes, strain leaves, and enjoy!
    • Don't forget to try for multiple infusions! Just add time to each steep.
      • For under 2:00 steep times, add 30 sec.
      • For 2:00 to 4:00, add 1 minute.
      • For over 4:00, add 2 minutes or more.
    • Like milk in your tea? Steep an extra minute!
    • Too strong? Take off a minute, or use 5g of leaf instead!
    • Too light? Kick it up another minute, or use 10g of leaf instead!
    • Wanna do a tea latte?
      • Use 11g (≈1½ tbsp) of leaf per ½ liter (≈17 oz).
      • Steep 2 minutes in ¼ liter (≈8 oz) boiling (100°C/212°C) water
      • Add ¼ liter (≈8 oz) hot milk, steep another 3 minutes.
      • Strain leaves, add sugar if you like (1 tsp usually does it), and enjoy!


  • Chinese pine-smoked lapsang souchong black tea


We are a small independent operation, and as such we operate inside of our retail space, the Phoenix Pearl Tea Tavern in Red Lodge, MT. We bag teas for orders while also serving in-store customers, including making cups of tea, making food, and selling bulk and retail purchases. Our employees work as quickly as they can, but we don't have a warehouse to operate out of with dedicated employees. As such, orders may take anywhere from 1-5 business days to ship. Thank you for understanding.