I’m not familiar with Assam teas on their own, although they’re in quite a few flavoured and breakfast blends I’ve had. I thought trying this and Butiki’s Taiwanese Assam would help me understand what “Assam” means, but the two teas are different, both in geography and taste. At least I know a little bit more than I originally did, but that doesn’t say much.
I really enjoyed this tea and every time I drank it I noticed something different. It’s fun for myself to note that I never would’ve liked this tea a year ago; it’s the mouth drying astringency that I’ve warmed up to recently.
I enjoyed drinking this with and without milk as both emphasized and curbed different things in the tea. Without milk, it really drove home that this is a full bodied tea with a kick, with a good dose of malt and astringency and a touch of dried fruit. I often had it like that for early mornings, when I needed something to wake me up.
I chose to drink it with milk today as I didn’t want to deal with the astringency (ok, so I haven’t quite warmed up to it). I guess it’s common sense that milk brings out cream but this gets really creamy! It’s like the difference between milk in a Cream of Earl Grey versus milk in a normal Earl Grey- it multiplies the creaminess instead of just adding cream. I don’t know how else to put it without sounding even sillier.
The cream is good but my favourite part of this tea is its quiet sweetness. It’s a “brown” sweetness- like raisins, maple syrup, or dates. The dry leaf and now empty cup smell of raisins and cocoa and the lingering aftertaste is fruity dark chocolate.