This is pretty mild for a Chai. I find it interesting that there are no cloves in this. For me, cloves are the first spice I think of when I think of a Masala Chai. The two primary flavors here is the chocolate and the cardamom. There is also a good amount of cinnamon and vanilla. The ginger adds a very subtle spiciness at the end of each sip. The nutmeg is not really there, I don’t think. The 4 primary flavors is chocolate, cardamom, cinnamon and vanilla.
I think they made the spices really mild in order to give the chocolate a chance to shine through – which it does. It’s very dessert-like and more decadent than a normal Chai. The flavor reminds me very much of LU Bastogne cookies.
This tea actually reminds me of a tea from Kusmi Tea called “Spicy Chocolate” which is a black tea flavored with chocolate, cinnamon, cardamom and ginger.
The tea base here is a blend of Chinese and Indian black teas. It doesn’t say anything about CTC pellets on their website or on the tin, but it looks like the Indian black tea in this is a CTC, like their regular Chai. The tea also has a stronger body than usual – medium to full in body. The CTC pellets together with the ground cinnamon and nutmeg makes a dust that settles on the bottom of the tin (the whole leaves settle on top), which doesn’t look very good. So you have to dig deep in the tin every time you make a mug of this tea, in order to get some of those dusty parts on your spoon. I don’t know if it’s supposed to be this way, but it is very unfortunate in my opinion. You’d need a paper filter when you make this tea so the dusty parts don’t end up in your cup.
Overall, this is an excellent and flavorful tea with lots of chocolate and spice notes, but the dust in the tin detracts from the aesthetics of the tea, unfortunately.
Dry leaves, appearance:
Whole black tea leaves and dusty CTC pellets mixed with cinnamon chips, ginger root, cardamom seeds, cardamom pods and ground cinnamon/nutmeg.
Dry leaves, aroma:
Sweet chocolate and vanilla notes with the warmth and spiciness of cardamom and cinnamon.
4 oz. loose tea tin.
Flavors: Cardamom, Chocolate, Cinnamon, Ginger, Spicy, Tea, Vanilla