Alright, here is my last review for the day. I finished a sample pouch of this chai around the start of the month. Normally, I am not a huge fan of chai blends, but this one was pretty much excellent.
I prepared this tea in the Western style. I steeped 3 grams of the loose tea and spice blend in approximately 8 ounces of 194 F water for 5 minutes. I neither performed a rinse nor attempted any additional infusions. I also tried this blend with and without an addition of 2% milk.
Prior to infusion, the dry tea leaf and spice mix emitted aromas of ginger, cardamom, clove, and cinnamon that were underscored by hints of black pepper. After infusion, scents of malt, cream, and caramel emerged. In the mouth, the liquor was brisk, biting, and astringent, expressing wood, caramel, cream, malt, brown toast, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, and black pepper notes before a spicy, peppery finish heavy on lingering cardamom, cinnamon, clove, ginger, and black pepper impressions. The addition of 2% milk tamed the astringency and briskness of this blend somewhat while allowing for greater integration of the aromas and flavors of the CTC black tea and the added spices.
To be totally honest, a preblended masala chai will likely never be able to top one that is homemade, but for what this was, it was more or less excellent. I could see it being good for those instances when one is craving chai, but does not have the time to prepare one from scratch. Overall, I have no real complaints with this blend. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a quality masala chai.
Flavors: Astringent, Biting, Black Pepper, Brown Toast, Caramel, Cardamom, Cinnamon, Clove, Cream, Ginger, Malt, Wood