Forgive me, it’s been more than two years since my last tea review. The new job pretty much ate my brain — and all my free time. O.K., so enough about me. Let’s talk tea.

Technically, you can’t call Himalayan Class Black a Darjeeling because it’s grown 150 miles (245 km) to the west. But for all intents and purposes that’s what it is, a Darjeeling grown just over the border in Hile, Nepal. Darjeelings have this amorphous quality about them. They’re technically a black tea, but they’re kind of green. And they’re made with Chinese varietals and Assamicas.

Himalayan Classic has that typical Darjeeling quality. It has very little body and that classic apricot-peach taste that Darjeelings have. (Rishi also says it has a malty quality, which I’m not tasting.)

If you like Darjeelings (particularly second flushes), you’ll like this.

You wouldn’t want to put milk in this tea. Well, let me rephrase that — I wouldn’t want to put milk in this tea. There’s no accounting for what you might want to do, but the tea doesn’t really have enough body to handle it. And I’m not sure milk goes well with teas with floral qualities either.

The tea is quite green, as is the wet infusion. The liquor has that greenie-oolongie thing that Darjeelings tend to have. Quite frankly, Darjeelings have been mediocre the past few years, so this is a good alternative.

First steep should be about three minutes, just like a Darjeeling. Go four to five minutes for the second steep. And I don’t think you can coax a decent third steep out of this.

Flavors: Flowers, Peach

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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East Side Rob is chief marketing officer for a philanthropy, where he spends a lot of time working late, contemplating a saner life, and drinking lots of — you guessed it — tea.


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