I have to start cleaning out the backlog again. Fortunately, it’s not nearly as bad as it was in September and the first part of the month. I was starting to make good progress on it, but being out of state and also not having consistent internet access for a couple days put me a little behind schedule. Anyway, I purchased this tea shortly before Tealyra discontinued it. I know virtually nothing about it. I don’t know what the leaf grade was supposed to be and I have no clue what the date of harvest was. I went into this one not knowing what to expect. I found it to be oddly mild for an Assam. I could not determine whether it was due to the tea being a bit stale or it just being naturally mild.
I prepared this tea in the Western style. I steeped one teaspoon of loose tea leaves in approximately 8 ounces of 205 F water for 5 minutes. No additional infusions were attempted.
Prior to infusion, the dry leaves emitted mild aromas of prunes, figs, red apples, and spices. After infusion, I picked up on stronger red apple and prune scents as well as emerging aromas of malt and wood. On the palate, I noted somewhat muted flavors of cream, malt, oatmeal, wood, toast, caramel, anise, nutmeg, prune, fig, clove, red apple, and molasses. The finish was short, smooth, creamy, and malty. There were some lingering red apple and spice flavors once the cream and malt notes began to recede.
I’m not certain this tea was all that stale. I figure that it was a bit on the old side, but it seemed to have a little too much life left in it to be all that stale. Maybe this was a very mild Assam. I’m still not entirely sure. I enjoyed the aromas and flavors the tea offered, but they just came across as being weak and somewhat flat. Overall, I suppose this was not really a bad tea, just a somewhat boring, overly timid one that was not representative of most Assam black teas.
Flavors: Anise, Caramel, Clove, Cream, Dried Fruit, Fig, Malt, Molasses, Nutmeg, Oats, Red Apple, Toast, Wood