drank Golden Monkey by Adagio Teas
260 tasting notes

The Final Sipdown: Day 15.2

A little bit late to be drinking black tea, but I was able to get to sleep at a decent hour last night and so I’m going to roll with it because I’ve been picking samples out mostly at random.

I’ve had enough black tea that I’ve become accustomed to certain scent profiles and feel that I know roughly what to expect when I take a sip. The aroma wafting up from this tea is malty and deep with a note of hay and old-book-mustiness. This tea completely contrasted with what I was expecting to taste [something dark and malty] and let me tell you, that was a really foreign experience for me. I think I actually made a noise when I tasted it the first time.

There is definitely a maltiness within this, but what I mainly get is something akin to caramel chews. Specifically, those Kraft caramel squares that came in the plastic packaging. It doesn’t really hit me anywhere on my tongue, it’s mainly in the slurp and then it dissipates rather quickly.

And then there’s this strange, lighter flavor. I had a lot of trouble placing it and spent a few minutes contemplating it and then it hit me: Raisinets. This tea reminds me exactly of Raisinets. Both the chocolate – that specific flavor that the chocolate coating takes on – and the raisin center. I don’t know how to explain it beyond that, because Raisinets have a distinct flavor to them, but perhaps those of you who have had them know what I’m talking about?

The only problem for me, and it’s a biggie I’m afraid, is that there is a lot of astringency in this and I’m not finding it pleasant. I very much think that this could be because I dumped the entire sample in. Maybe if I had gone with a shorter steep time I could have avoided it, but as it stands it’s making it difficult to finish the cup. The aftertaste is pleasantly sweet, however. The raisin taste really comes through in the end. And while the players in this cup are not particularly new-sounding compared to what I typically get out of black teas, it is combining in a manner that is making this tea both alien and familiar, and I’m finding myself quite intrigued by it.

I’m actually somewhat sad that the sample is gone, but Adagio samplers don’t hit the bank very hard and thanks to TFS [and the generosity of Steepsterites like Erin I’m finding some teas that may have me placing a small order with Adagio.

It might be time to try some milk and sugar in this to see if I can temper the bitterness in this cup. I’ll be sure to edit the end of this log if I do. But for now…

ETA: A little bit of milk and sugar did indeed lessen the bitterness of this tea. It also decreased the sensations of everything else involved rather dramatically, but that’s somewhat expected. I still get Raisinets and caramel, so I’m not really complaining and I’ve been able to finish the cup this way. I’ve also noticed that this tea is leaving my mouth rather dry. Ah, paper tongue. It’s been a while since I’ve seen you.

Teas Downed: 26

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Former coffeeist, turned teaite. Lover of writing, reading, photography, and music. Traveler of life. Known to be ridiculous on occasion.


Virginia, USA



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