I wasn’t sure what I wanted this morning, as I went through my tea drawer. I knew it wouldn’t be a herbal, because I feel so terrible in the mornings at the moment that caffeine is absolutely essential. I finally settled on this one, although the idea the description presented to me and the reality of this blend are two quite different things.
The description promises spice, tobacco, and pineapple, so I was thinking savoury/fruity. After a quick sniff, it became evident that chocolate would be the main deal, and it is. It’s a whole lot sweeter than I expected, with milk chocolate front and centre. There’s also a hint of pineapple, sweet and juicy, which pairs better with the chocolate than I was expecting. I mean, in my head, pineapple and chocolate isn’t the most natural combination. So, straight up, it’s really chocolatey and fruity.
Tobacco conjured up the idea of smoke, but there are no smoke notes here. It’s not like a lapsang, of anything of that ilk. What there is is a heady sweetness, more like a cigar or pipe tobacco, which in hindsight makes a lot more sense. It’s almost perfumey, but it doesn’t quite cross that line. Just sweet, and fragrant, with a touch of vanilla.
There’s a hint of black pepper right at the end of the sip, and that’s the only spicy note I get from this one. It works, in an off-beat gourmand sort of way.
It took a few sips for me to realise, but I actually really like this one. It’s quite desserty, which was unexpected, and I don’t feel like the description prepared me for that. The chocolate notes are top-notch, though, and the other flavours are complementary and well balanced. The black base (assam, plus a South Indian black) is smooth and malty, perfectly suited.
I’m late to the August Uncommon party, but glad to be here at last!