I was excited to see this back in stock, so I picked up a couple ounces. I’ve finally had a chance to sit down and have a real tasting, after having some nice cups with family.

Opening the bag and taking a whiff is a real treat! A rush of cocoa and vanilla, with nice maltiness to back it up. A bit like fresh brownies.

The tea steeps a nice dark brown, and retains the lovely aroma.

The taste is exceptional! Smooth and full, lots of flavors. No need for sugar, as the vanilla beans give just the right amount of sweetness. The black tea blend is excellent, and would stand up well on its own without the vanilla. No corners were cut in putting this blend together. I should note that this tea is flavored with actual beans, which gives it a nice smoothness versus a typical “flavored” tea using extract or other processed flavoring.

A second steeping holds up well, but I find that I need to about double the concentration to maintain the same strength as a first steeping. (In other words, I use half as much water in the second steeping.)

Overall, a superb black tea! It works well as a morning wake-up or an after-dinner dessert companion. This is going on my must-buy list. I don’t usually enjoy “flavored” teas, but this one is done very well. If you prefer “straight” black tea like me, and you’re looking for something with a fuller flavor profile, don’t hesitate to pick this up!

I tried this side by side with Whispering Pines’s Ambrosia. If you’re wondering, this tea uses Madagascar vanilla beans, while Ambrosia uses Tahitian beans. I think the difference between the two is that Ambrosia has a more pronounced vanilla flavor. Other than that, they are identical in my opinion, so their reviews will be very similar.

Flavors: Cocoa, Vanilla

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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