This was a bit of a humbling experience for me.
I’m very admittedly new to the whole tea scene, and I do not have a refined palate. So the way I’ve been teaching myself about differentiating teas is by trying them all plain, no cream or sugar. Besides, I prefer my drinks to not have calories (and I rather hate the way artificial sweeteners taste).
I’ve been doing that pretty militantly, so I wasn’t thinking too hard when I tried this tea. Naturally, it was kind of horrible (to me, at least). It was like…bitter and spicy but not in a good way. Couldn’t even finish the cup.
Welllllll it was recently brought to my attention that the honest-to-goodness way to make Chai is to use milk and sugar (or similar). So I swallowed my pride and tried it again, being liberal with the milk (okay, I only have non-dairy powdered creamer at my disposal right now) and sugar. And I have to say, it’s pretty tasty. It’s Chai, but it’s not super intense Chai (thanks to it being mixed with black tea).
I don’t know how I feel about some teas absolutely requiring milk and sugar; that’s not why I drink tea. And it’s hard for me to separate the nuances of tea from the milk and sugar. But next time I have a sweet tooth, this will be what I reach for.
[Quick summary: black tea with masala spices, and it tastes about how you imagine it would taste.]
Pictures are available on my blog (as well as my original review before I tried it the proper way): http://lizkuba.com/tea-review-aries-by-adagio/