Let me just preface this by stating that I love chocolate—the taste and aroma of it both. I liked the fact that this Rishi tea is organic, so I decided to give it a try. Once opened, the tea in the bag smells earthy, and, with some imagination, I can almost smell the chocolate. I followed the directions on the box. I brought the water and the tea combination to boil on the stove top as suggested, added milk (although I rarely drink tea with milk), and brewed for three minutes as instructed. The milk makes this rich, too rich. Unfortunately, I can’t say that the richness is due to the tea’s scent or flavor. The chocolate simply doesn’t come through for me in the cup. The same is true for the vanilla and the spices; they are not distinct. I was even surprised to see vanilla beans listed as an ingredient. I can feel mostly the yerba mate.
I tried it a second time. I started brewing it in the same slow way on the stovetop as suggested on the box, but I didn’t add the milk before it was fully steeped. This time, I only added a drop of vanilla-flavored coconut milk, and I have to say that I enjoyed the tea better this way. The flavors are still extremely soft, barely there, but the vanilla in the coconut milk added another dimension. Frankly, it was the vanilla in the milk that saves the tea for me. I wish I didn’t have to use additional flavors.
UPDATE: I have to say that this tea has grown on me. I would like the company to remove the word “chocolate” from the name because the lack of chocolate scent and flavor cause some serious disappointment. However, if one doesn’t expect the chocolate, it is a nice, smooth combination, which I find comforting.