I received a sample of this from Yezi, and it is a very unique tea. As a lover of black teas, I have never experienced any quite like this before. Now, before I go into my review, I must point out that I did not follow the steeping directions Yezi suggests: making brews every 15 seconds or whatever. I usually can never taste much of anything that early on in the steeping process, so I just made the tea the way I normally make all my black teas: boiling water (which actually I found out cools to around 190-195 in most of my tea ware—which includes ceramic and glass teapots, and in this case, a ceramic mug)—and I steeped the leaves for 5 minutes. So perhaps that is why I experienced VERY different flavors than what others report in their reviews.

Anyway, the aroma of the dry leaves consisted of a lovely chocolate scent. The aroma of the liquor was very different: I know it sounds strange but it totally smelled like dry bread. And the tea tasted like slightly burnt bread crusts. Very strange to me. The bready taste was immediately followed by a twinge of bitterness. Other flavors I picked up on was a very strong roasted flavor with hints of coffee. Actually, this tea reminds me of a stout, with roasted malt or roasted barley flavors. Overall, it had a dark, malty, roasted taste, with no sweetness.

I honestly really didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would. I think this is the first black tea I didn’t care for! (But then again, I probably ruined it due to my lack of adherence to the brewing recommendations for this tea. Shame on me! haha.) Anyway, I’m also surprised I didn’t enjoy it because it does have the dark coffee and beer flavor aspects I tend to like. I seem to gravitate toward a good dark stout, or a cup of black, strong coffee, or a nice piece of bitter dark chocolate…so this tea should be right up my alley! Perhaps it was the thick bready and roasted part that sort of made it too strange for my liking. I will have to try this tea again sometime and actually follow the proper directions to see if that changes my opinion!

195 °F / 90 °C 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”
― C.S. Lewis

I have been enjoying and obsessing over tea since my college days, when a good cup got me through a long night of studying. Later on, tea helped keep me energized and hydrated for my long runs when I was marathon training. I was (and still am) a complete health nut, and researched all of teas’ wonderful benefits and to this day value the beverage not only for its outstanding flavors but for its antioxidant and health-giving properties.

After a torturous nine-month hiatus from tea while I was pregnant (I tried not to drink too much because of the caffeine) I am back to enjoying it without guilt once again! Although I’m nursing my son so I still have to limit my intake (Bummer! Guess my days of downing 4 cups of gunpowder green tea in the morning are long gone…) I’m just savoring the 1-2 cups per day I do allot myself. Now tea has once again come to the rescue at this time in my life, granting me moments of peace and pleasure and helping me keep my sanity after many long sleepless nights with the baby. Oh thank God for tea.

Favorites: Yunnan, Kenyan, and Assam black teas, White Peony (Bai Mu Dan), Pu-erh, and Milk Oolong.

I really need to try other kinds of tea, and not just stick like glue to my favorites! However, it can be hard with a limited budget, and I tend to buy my favorites repeatedly instead of trying something new because I honestly just love what I have!



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