Looking at the dry tea, I was surprised that the black tea was in the form of little nuggets, rather than rolled leaves like I’m used to. Upon further reading, I think this is probably due to CTC processing (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crush,Tear,Curl).
The scent of the dry tea is VERY spicy and rich. I think the most prominent note is cloves? Once brewed, the scent mellows out quite a bit. I don’t appreciate any chocolatey scents either dry or brewed, it’s all just spicy to me. Also, for a chai tea, the spice blend really says “Christmas!” to me, not “India!”.
The taste is enjoyable – I had this cup without any sweetener or milk and it was entirely drinkable that way. The black tea base is smooth with just a bit of astringency. I could swear there’s some sort of orange flavour in this tea, blending with cinnamon and cloves. I don’t really appreciate any of the chocolate or the chili, unfortunately.
I like this tea, but to me it tastes more like a “Christmas Blend” than a “Chocolate Chilli Chai”. Your mileage may vary. :)
Flavors: Cinnamon, Citrus, Cloves