Oh!, I said, after I poured the water on the leaves, and was sniffing the cup on the way back to my desk. Flowers!
What kind of flowers, you ask? A legitimate question, without an adequate answer from me. I can still get the smell of them as I sit here waiting for the cup to cool…but it’s definitely floral. Like standing in a florist’s, and outside they’ve just freshly cut the grass.
As it cools some, that scent is darkening down to something more patently Darjeeling in aroma — a bit floral, a bit honey, a bit grapes on a vine.
The taste is much more pronounced in the honey department than the smell, which makes me happy. I am a big fan of honey (though I never really add it to my tea, unless I’m making chai…because milk and honey are made to go together, of course).
This is quite nice. I’m used to the Darjeelings I’ve tried leaning toward being thin and grapeskin-tart when they’re still very hot, and mellowing and filling out as they cool; this tea is currently just on the comfortable-to-drink side of hot, and it’s mostly honey-sweet, smooth, a bit savory — probably from the full mouthfeel. I keep sipping and looking for new flavors, but it’s remaining pretty consistent, nothing new from one sip to the next. This is alright, though, because each sip is pretty pleasant, surprisingly cozy for a Darjeeling. There’s a very subtle hint of the tartness at the very back of my tongue the longer I sip, but it’s not showing up for the main event.
I don’t drink a slew of Darjeelings, but of those I’ve had, this one is pretty tasty!
I’ll get around to noting steep 2 in a little bit.
(Holy cow, my rating system is a mess. It really needs some janitorial work!)