As you may have seen on the discussion boards, I recently missed out on a chance to taste this new-fangled sparkling tea product. Not wine, not cider, not tea, but sort of all things at once, or something. Fru P replied to my comment on the Book of Faces that if they had any left she would save some for me, but of course this was not possible.
I did take the opportunity to stock up on that awesome vanilla that they have (Sil, if you are still interested in trying it, please message me. I have loads now.) and I also bought some of her caramel flavoured black. This is another highly coveted flavour for me in tea. I love it when it occurs naturally and I love it when it’s added artificially. Unlike vanilla, though, I’ve met several caramel flavoured teas that fit my requirements exactly.
Anyway, I had to try this one as well, of course. I don’t even know how I missed it the first time I was in there. It’s not like me to not even look for it.
I had a whiff of the leaves before steeping and both that aroma and the aroma of the cup now steaming under my nose are extremely promising. It’s all sweet and butter-y caramel. There is even a smidge of something nutty to it. A sweet kind of nut, like an almond. All heavy and creamy.
The flavour, at the first sip, struck me as a bit thin and a bit… twig-y, sort of. I don’t know, I just got this image of twigs in my head. It’s not immediately delivering on the promise of the aroma.
Some would say, ‘try adding a little sugar’ or ‘try adding a little milk’, to which say a vehement no. If a tea has to have additives in order to taste right, it’s just not a good tea. Additives, for me, kills the tea. Additives are murder. In other words, I rarely actually like a tea very much after adding stuff to it, especially sugar. I can deal with milk but prefer not to have it. Sugar or other sweeteners, however… I do not understand how some of you can even get it down. So, no. I’m not tampering with the tea and nothing you say can ever convince me otherwise.
Instead I’m going to let it cool down a bit, and there it is. There is a caramel flavour there now, but it’s still not as rich as in the aroma and it’s sort of hovering under a water-y surface.
It helps a bit as it cools and develops a quite nice nutty aftertaste, but it still never gets really caramel-y. I suspect this requires some fiddling with the steeping process. So far, though, I’m not really convinced.
On completely unrelated note, this car (https://fbcdn-sphotos-a-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash3/944415_10151616377506122_932531436_n.jpg) is driving around in the town where I live. No, Steepsterites. Your eyes are not decieving you.