From the queue
I’ve had dragon pearls before. I’ve had Teavivre’s dragon pearls once before, and that was the time when I was turned off Teavivre’s samples in general. There was nothing wrong with the tea and it was in no way Teavivre’s fault. It just so happened that I had half the dragon pearl sample and then a few hours later it became abundantly clear to me that ‘that niggly iffy feeling’ was in fact food poisoning (I believe caused by some mayonnaise I’d eaten the day before and probably shouldn’t have eaten). It created an unfortunate link between the Teavivre sample packaging and the illness, so I’ve had difficulties with them since. It’s really hard to convince yourself to taste something when it reminds you of food poisoning, no matter how much you had otherwise been looking forward to it. It’s been months and months and I’m just now finding myself capable of using them again. (Last time I had food poisoning, it ended up being associated with beans. Didn’t touch beans again for the better part of six months.)
It occurs to me that I’ve told you this before…? Let’s just skip all that.
The aroma is quite strong on this one. Very cocoa-y at first, and then as it cools it comes more grain-y and a little malt-y. It’s very pleasant. It has almost all the notes that I like in a Chinese black. We’re just missing a hint of smoke here to make it perfect. But we can’t have everything.
The taste is quite strong as well. I’m wondering if I might have brewed it a little harder than was strictly necessary as I nearly forgot to pour it, but apart from a little extra bite, no harm done. If this had been an Indian or a Ceylon tea, it would have been completely ruined by now. This is why I love Chinese. No fuss.
You can still pick up a great deal of grain-y notes and a lot of cocoa as well. I expect if I hadn’t forgotten it at first, it would have been loaded with cocoa notes. In general this tea strikes me as rather sweet, but I don’t really consider it very malty. I think it’s the cocoa notes that make it sweet and a hint of something along the lines of burnt sugar.
Do you have caramelised almonds for Christmas where you live? They make them with melted sugar in big bowl shaped pans and they’re excellent when bought from a stand on the street, freshlymade and still warm. You can also get them factory made in shops along with all the other sweeties, and I would advise people to stay away from those as they are quite horrid indeed. Smells sickeningly sweet, though, when you walk past a stand. This sweet note reminds me of eating those almonds, the good ones from the man on the street. I want some now. I’ll have to keep an eye out (or a nose out, as you generally smell them before you see them) for a stand.