I’ve tried more than a handful or two of these alcohol barrel aged productions. Though typically delicious, one thing they often have in common is that whatever alcohol they’ve essentially been scented with typically steeps out entirely within two or maybe three (if you’re lucky) infusions. I don’t know if it comes down to the type of alcohol or the number of days it was barrel aged, but that’s not been my experience with this tea. The dry leaf smells very strongly of rye – like taking a sniff straight from the bottle. With strong notes of oak, spiced fruits, black pepper, and pumpernickel bread; this tea tastes very much of the rye it was aged with. Even after six or seven infusions, the taste still hadn’t fully gone away either. It really, truly did penetrate these leaves. Plus, as is typical of teas from the LaoManE region, this black tea packs some bitter bite and hearty astringency – it works brilliantly in conjunction with the rye though. Stroke of genius to combine the two.
I love weird and experimental teas, and for as long as I’ve known him, that’s something I’ve always been able to count on Andrew to deliver – whether it was back when he was dehydrating watermelon and other weird fruits for his blended tea ventures or now that his focus is centered more so on pure/traditional teas. Very happy to have caught this one when I had the chance!
Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1mfv_Qq3YvM