2 Tasting Notes
This is a pretty good tea, but to me it’s not really an English Breakfast tea. EB is usually a little malty Assam mixed with a bright/citrusy Ceylon (Sri Lankan) or African tea. I asked the Teavana clerk and she said this was 100% Rwandan origin. It’s very bright/citrusy, almost tangy, without much underlying malt character. I enjoy it, and despite being one of the cheapest teas at Teavana, it’s good quality. However, when I want real English Breakfast flavor I go with another tea. I’ve read other reviews that said this tea is different than it was in the past. I wonder if Teavana went from a classic blend to 100% African. This is great if you like bright Ceylon-type teas, though. I like to imagine the misty green mountains of Rwanda at sunrise where this tea grows as I drink it.
For a large box under $3, this is a really great tea. It is moderately flavorful, dark, and balanced if brewed properly: 3.5 minutes at 205F. I like my tea strong and usually brew at least 4 minutes, but with this tea anything past 3.5 mins and it gets very bitter. Brew 3-3.5 and it’s actually got some sweet notes, in addition to the classic English Breakfast flavor and “brightness”, but not much maltiness (TJ’s Irish Breakfast has that in spades, though). It’s got a beautiful dark red color and a nice nose. I actually own much better and more expensive black tea than this, but I find myself coming back to it on a regular basis. It’s a keeper.