I haven’t reviewed as many Darjeelings this month, but in all honesty, that has ended up being a good thing. I was starting to get a little burnt-out on them and needed to take some time to focus on other types of tea. On that note, I have recently allowed myself to get back into green tea and roasted oolongs, which has been wonderful for me. I have been making the time to drink those types of tea more frequently. Quite frankly, I kind of forgot how much I liked them. When I noticed a few Darjeelings on What-Cha’s website that I had not previously tried, however, I had to pull the trigger, and naturally enough, I rushed to try them once I received them. I tend to like the Darjeelings Alistair sources and this one was no exception. In fact, I wish I had purchased a larger amount!
I prepared this tea in the Western style. I steeped 3 grams of loose leaf material in approximately 8 ounces of 203 F water for 5 minutes. No additional infusions were attempted.
Prior to infusion, I picked up aromas of anise, licorice, and wood coming from the dry leaf material. After infusion, I found that aromas of chocolate, malt, Muscatel, caramel, and orange blossom had emerged. The liquor offered notes of grass, anise, licorice, toast, malt, cream, butter, roasted almond, violet, orange blossom, rose, and Muscatel balanced by subtler-than-expected flavors of chocolate and caramel. Oddly, I did not pick up any notes of wood. The finish was smooth and clean, offering lingering notes of malt, roasted almond, orange blossom, cream, and Muscatel.
I’m a huge fan of darker, toastier second flush Darjeelings, especially those that have a heavy Muscatel character, so it should come as no surprise that this tea did the trick for me. I greatly appreciated the complexity this tea offered and was especially impressed by its nice mouthfeel and overall depth. Definitely one for connoisseurs, I recommend this tea highly to anyone who is even remotely appreciative of Darjeeling black teas.
Flavors: Almond, Anise, Butter, Caramel, Chocolate, Cream, Grass, Licorice, Malt, Muscatel, Orange Blossom, Rose, Toast, Violet