I’ve held on to this sample from a What-cha order for quite some time, as I believe I think like the rest of most Steepsterites about Kenyan teas. Well, in general, they’re not very exciting. They’re used in Breakfast Blends because they are affordable and don’t really offer any nuances…they’re just straight strength and malt. Well, I need to learn to rethink my groupthink, as this is not your mamma’s bagged tea in leaf form…..
Using the steeping parameters set by What-Cha, I found myself looking into a cup of golden tea and smelling all sorts of floral delicacies. I live near orange groves in Southern California and the smell from this flowery orange pekoe black tea is similar to orange blossoms…white, delicate and sweet. The maltiness of the cup is well balanced by this sweet floral note and a woodsy mid-note that gives the tea a nice round mouthfeel. There is some astringency here, but it isn’t the typical “how’d my socks get blown off” astringency of Kenya CTCs….. (I’m still missing some socks from earlier steeping experiments with Kenya CTCs.) This Orange Pekoe black tea is much more refined in it’s astringency. It elevates the flavor profile to an afternoon tea. An afternoon tea that would feel at home accompanying cucumber sandwiches as well as PB and J sandwiches. One that I would serve my non-tea enthusiast friends and they would recognize as really nice and refined tea without any “weird flavors”.
With the scorching summer approaching quickly here near San Diego, I will be glad I have the rest of the sample package from What-Cha for mornings when I think I just might not be able to bear the thought of a heavy cup of tea….that’s when this previously forgotten sample will be remembered and enjoyed again, wholeheartedly.
PS: I can’t believe there are only 2 of us that have reviewed this tea…. anyone else own it but haven’t gotten around to drinking it yet?
Flavors: Astringent, Flowers, Malt, Wood