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A faint smoky smell greets me on opening the packet; the dark olive green pearls also have a slightly acrid scent. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a gunpowder, so I’m not too sure what to expect. I’ll do two and a half minutes at 180, as I’m thinking this will be strong enough for my taste.

Whew! Sure is. There’s smoke there, but it’s also really astringent already. The liquor is a somewhat cloudy green-tinged brown. The scent of the liquid is lightly smokey, with green tea pushed to the background. Bitterness too – something I’m not usually turned off about, if it’s in moderation. However this bitterness feels somehow much more penetrating than usual, and lingers at the back of the throat. Maybe I just steeped it too long, though it was right in the middle of their 2-3 minute guideline. Ooof! Don’t think I’ll be able to finish this cup, though I think I’d try it again steeped for maybe half the time to see if it made a difference.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec
RachanaC (Rachel)-iHeartTeas

Think I may open this sample today and then we can compare notes.

Adham

Great – looking forward to hearing what you think…

Rabs

Oh, I am so having bad tea flashbacks. I really disliked this tea. ::shudders::

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RachanaC (Rachel)-iHeartTeas

Think I may open this sample today and then we can compare notes.

Adham

Great – looking forward to hearing what you think…

Rabs

Oh, I am so having bad tea flashbacks. I really disliked this tea. ::shudders::

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Grandma introduced me to tea as a kid (lipton with milk and sugar; a bit poured into the saucer to cool it down and then sipped from there), and I’ve never looked back. Still have a slight preference for teas that go well with milk (or even better, cream) and sugar, but since Grandma’s day I’ve branched out to appreciate green and white teas, rooibos and pu erh. Absolutely love Mariage Freres!

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