La Route des Comptoirs

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Recent Tasting Notes


This is the only Earl Grey I own now. Along the years, as my inquest for good crisp clean, and not bitter earl grey had stopped to the first mediocre earl grey I would find, I discovered this brand walking by the aisle of a farmer’s shop. I was out of tea since we just moved back to Europe and my teas were all in the moving truck, I decided to give this a try. It was a huge hit, but now it has become a memory-associated souvenir picture: A tired person after relocating across the ocean finds her perfect tea. She stops everything that day, sits down and grabs a book, and enjoys a french rainy spring day.

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I bought this tea at the organic shop in my neighbourhood. We were having an intense day and I decided that I’d get a new blend to try out while I was there to buy bell peppers. I grabbed the first black tea that caught my eye. I needed black tea. Nothing else would make me happy. I knew it. I felt like buying a flavoured one though, I was feeling adventurous. And so I grabbed this one – a chocolate-orange flavoured black tea with a nice-enough-looking packaging. Took it, bought it, brewed it.

The first impression this tea gave me was that it was going to taste very, VERY chocolate-y. The sachet contains approximately 50% tea leaves and 50% cocoa bean fragments – very impressive when I first opened it. I don’t think I’ve ever had any tea blend before that contained so little… tea.
The leaves smell 100% like orange-flavoured Pim’s biscuits. Both the orange and the chocolate are very strong – the tea itself is very discreet in that combo, which is not something I’ve had a lot before. Enough to make me nervous.

The colour of the brew is a light brown with red undertones. It smells way more tea-y than it smells of chocolate or orange, it’s the complete opposite of the dry leaves’ smell.

First sip: I immediately tasted the tea. It’s good quality tea, not at all the kind of tea you’d need to hide under layers of flavourings because of how bad it is. And then, 0.2 seconds later – an explosion of chocolate and orange. The flavourings themselves are amazing as well. All the ingredients are great quality and highlight each other’s strong points.

The base tea is very well chosen because it highlights the excellent aromas. It’s a great blend, obviously meticulously thought-out and well-executed. What a pleasure! I’ve never loved any chocolate-flavoured tea that I’ve tasted before, but I absolutely recommend this one. I’m quite surprised myself because I’m not usually a fan of chocolate in tea, but this one I’ve been drinking every once in a while since I’ve bought it because it’s quite a remarkable blend.

EDIT: tried this with a tiny teaspoon of Lapsang (Smokey Lapsang by Dammann Frères), steeped for 3 minutes – this deepened the chocolate flavour and brought out the tea even more. I recommend trying this!

Flavors: Dark Chocolate, Orange, Tea

175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML

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