Sil sent me some of the custom blend a while ago, but I also have some from my recent Butiki group order and thought it would be fun to drink the two side by side. They both had three minute steep time in boiling water.
Sil’s tastes a lot more astringent and sour and the dry leaf smelled breadier, while the new one has a brighter, fruitier profile. Sil’s is a little flatter and isn’t particularly sweet, except in a pie crust kind of way. The new one tastes like the rhubarb is adequately sugared, and has a slightly sweeter finish (those grahams really pop). I prefer to drink Sil’s at a cooler temperature. Both have a sweet-sour, mouth puckering aftertaste.
Well, that was my short and lazy comparison. Variables include the age of custom sample, and the quantity of fruit and graham pieces in the in each strainer. Sil’s had less fruit, and possibly more grahams.
I do prefer the newer version more, for the slightly smoother, sweeter profile. Both cups become increasingly better the more I sip away at them though. It’s a blend where it’s best to take it slow, in order to appreciate everything.