This was part of my “three tea mystery grab bag” purchase, and was definitely the one I was most excited to try after sniffing the leaves (what tea purchaser doesn’t immediately open all of their mailed teas and smell them, eh?). The leaves are also lovely and curled/twisted and black with gold-red highlights ( I took a crappy phone pic for steepster).
The aroma of leaf and steeped liquid is dusty rose, malt and grape, bearing some similarities to Darjeeling.
Tangy-sweet muscatel, stonefruit and floral rose are the most prominent notes. A faint hint of pepper. Malt is also present and incredibly smooth and syrupy – You know how some lagers are like super boring and taste like funky water for most of the mouthful, but then, BAM, you’re smacked with the finish of decadent honey-malt syrupy goodness? It’s like that except you don’t have to wait each mouthful for “payoff”.
Ok, so I enjoyed the few Darjeeling teas I’ve tried but never tend to buy them because I don’t love their tendency for astringency. This tea has all the qualities I loved about my favourite Darjeeling experiences minus that big con. There is some pleasant astringency but nowhere near the level of some of the first steep Darjeeling teas I’ve had.
This tea is just so incredibly smooth and full-bodied and hits all the right notes for me (I’m a rose note person). I don’t know how this would hold up with connoisseurs of Darjeeling or Nepalese teas but it’s more than perfect for my pedestrian tastes. Wish it was available for purchase!
Steep Count: 2
Flavors: Floral, Grapes, Honey, Malt, Muscatel, Pepper, Plum, Rose, Stonefruit