Not being familiar with many Kangra teas, I decided to go ahead and review this sample from the Wah Estate. I love exploring black teas from different estates in each of India’s tea producing regions, so I could not resist the urge to try this tea. I found it to be unique and somewhat earthier and a little more vegetal than expected. Apparently, the earthy and vegetal characteristics are trademarks of many Kangra black teas.
I prepared this tea in the Western style. I steeped about 3 grams of loose leaf material in approximately 8 ounces of 194 F water for 5 minutes. I did not attempt any additional infusions.
Prior to infusion, the dry leaf material emitted aromas of earth and wood. After infusion, I picked up aromas of earth, malt, butter, toast, wood, and roasted almond. In the mouth, the liquor expressed a unique blend of roasted almond, toast, hay, earth, straw, malt, butter, and cream notes which quickly gave way to fleeting impressions of apple, yellow plum, golden raisin, lemon zest, lemongrass, violet, dandelion, and rose. The finish was very smooth and pleasant, featuring a nice mix of lingering roasted almond, hay, straw, and wood notes balanced by faint traces of butter, dandelion, yellow plum, and golden raisin.
Fortunately, this tea did not end up being super vegetal on the palate. The combination of fruit and flower notes made for an absolutely delightful surprise. Overall, this was a mostly earthy, nutty, malty, savory kind of black tea that offered very well-integrated, refined aromas and flavors. For me, it made an excellent introduction to Kangra black teas and made me want to try more in the very near future. I would recommend it highly to anyone looking for something exotic that is not too out there and/or an introduction to Kangra black teas.
Flavors: Almond, Apple, Butter, Cream, Dandelion, Earth, Hay, Lemon Zest, Lemongrass, Malt, Plums, Raisins, Rose, Straw, Toast, Violet, Wood