I generally don’t put samples in my Steepster cupboard because I have so many of them and small amounts that I can sip down quickly enough that I feel like I’m misleading myself as to what’s really in my cupboard.
Every now and then I make a mistake — apparently I put this sample in my cupboard a while back. I’ve now removed it. Which is exciting because it brings me that much closer to a cupboard that is under some degree of control.
Continuing with working my way through the oolong stash, I thought I’d give another Todd & Holland flavored one a try since I enjoyed yesterday’s Tropical Escape so much.
The smell in the packet is strongly strawberry — like smelling a packet of dried strawberries. However, after steeping in the gaiwan for an initial 15 second, post rinse steep at 195F, I get very little strawberry aroma. It’s there, but extremely muted. The tea is light golden yellow.
Admittedly, I had red beans and rice for lunch about 30 minutes ago, so my taster was overwhelmed recently. But the first steep is disappointing. Not much flavor of any kind. A little strawberry in the aftertaste, maybe.
Steep 2, 20 sec. A bit more flavor of the underlying tea, a floral green oolong. I can get a hint of strawberry, a parfait-like strawberry.
Steep 3, 25 sec. Interesting. This is actually the best steep so far, which is surprising. I would have expected the strawberry to become fainter with each steep, but it is actually stronger in this one. It blends well with the flavor of the oolong base.
Steep 4, 30 sec. The strawberry is fainter.
At this point, I feel like I’ve given this as much attention as it warrants. I might steep it a couple more times, but while it’s pleasant enough, it seems like Western in the Breville is more than adequate to enjoy this for what it is.
It’s not bad, I would just hope for more strawberry, since it’s in the name.
Flavors: Floral, Strawberry