Doulton’s Shakespeare: A Tasting Note in 5 Acts
Act IV scene 6
And therefore, — since I cannot prove a lover,
To entertain these fair well-spoken days, —
I am determined to prove a villain,
And hate the idle pleasures of these days.
Richard III, Act I scene 1
This morning I fumbled through my Shakespeare box trying to find one that I hadn’t had that would be good for the morning. I’m getting closer to the last “Act” of notes and I’m not wanting it to end! I picked up the packet of this tea and got ready to keep rummaging because I thought that I’d already tried it. But no — it’s unopened! But it’s an oolong, isn’t it? NO — it’s a black tea! Awwww yeaaaaah!
I popped open the packet: Golden Monkey? It must be a kin of Adagio’s Golden Monkey (I’m too lazy to google at the moment). I started to scoop it into my teapot and froze: the leaves are striking! Many are spiraled up like mini cinnamon rolls. They’re fuzzy-wuzzy cinnabuns! Two different shades of brown (again, like the Golden Monkey). I dub these the cutest leaves that I’ve seen so far.
The smell was very reminiscent of the Monkey as well: malty and dark. The first few sips I was amazed at how much my tastes have changed over the past few months. It has a sweet rich maltiness that I really enjoyed. It’s not my favorite flavor in teas, but I liked it better than ever. There was a great sweetness that I couldn’t place and I finally looked up the description. Unsweetened cocoa? I enjoyed something quasi-chocolatey? ::earth shatters:: As the cup cooled I got a bit more earthiness that’s very similar to a Pu Erh.
I shall call this tea my Richard, Duke of Gloucester (a.k.a. Richard III). One of Shakespeare’s greatest villains: a bad boy whom you love to hate. The only problem I had with calling this tea Richard III is that he’s known as a rather unattractive hunchback. Well, I think that I’ve figured it out: if you were to make a Richard III action figure, then you could stuff a spiral tea leaf under the shirt’s back for the hump. Yes, that’s lame and also insensitive to hunchbacks, but that’s what I’m going with and I’m sticking to it. Ultimately I think this is a really good tea and deserves a dark and complex character to represent it. NE