Woo, time for more Lupicia teas! I felt like having a nice straight black tea, so I chose this one to sip on while doing a bit of crafting. I wasn’t really sure what to expect, as I’ve never had a Nilgiri tea before. I knew that it’s an Indian tea, so I figured maybe somewhat similar to Assam? Only one way to find out! I have to say, I’m always a bit annoyed when companies are vague about their teas – for instance, this one says “Nilgiri-based black tea blend” but doesn’t tell you what other teas are included, and the ingredients only says “Black tea”. Sigh! Sorry, just one of my pet peeves. The leaves are very dark chocolate brown, and they’re about medium in size and not very broken. I can definitely tell that there are multiple types here, they’re the same color but some of the leaves are more straight and stiff while others seem shorter and more feathery. Dry scent is predominantly hay with a bit of malt and sweetness. I used my default black tea parameters as I was unsure how to steep Nilgiri – 3 minutes at 200 degrees with a slightly heaped teaspoon of leaf.
I will say that yes, this does remind me a bit of a lighter Assam. It has that malty flavor with a touch of raisin that I associate with Assam (though I haven’t tried many, I’m sure they vary widely). However, it also has an earthy, slightly mineral base note that reminds me of a lower grade Keemun or Dian Hong. I can taste a little bit of hay throughout the sip as well, though I’ve found that in many different types of black tea. Overall, this would be very nice as an everyday tea and I can see it taking milk and sugar well, but it’s easily drinkable without additions as well.
Flavors: Earth, Hay, Malt, Mineral, Raisins, Smooth, Wood