So this evening while waiting for my dinner to finish baking I am reviewing a tea that has one of my favorite fruits ever in it, the glorious fig. As a child I was lucky enough to have grandparents that had a fig tree so my summer visits usually consisted of me eating a lot of them, I still get giddy when I see the local stores with them in stock and usually eat my purchase in one sitting.
Tupelo Honey Fig is a blend of Lemon Myrtle, Peppermint Leaves, Fennel, White Tea, Basil, Licorice Root, Blackberry Leaves, Honey Flavor, and Fig Pieces (all organic.) The first thing I notice while examining the leaves is the aroma, I notice no fig or honey at all. The most potent aroma is that of dried leaves, not tea or a specific spice, just dried leaves. The same aroma you get from a tree branch whose leaves dried out due to drought or being knocked off the tree, it is slightly sweet and earthy mixed with an unmistakable scent of something that was once green that is no longer. After the initial leaf smell you start to get little hints of the fennel and maybe an idea of the basil. It is not at all a bad aroma, just certainly not what I was expecting from a tea that is fig and honey themed.
After brewing the aroma becomes significantly sweeter and you get to really smell the honey! The leaf aroma is still very strong but it is accompanied by basil and more fennel. I do not really smell the mint and I am assuming the leafy smell is from the Lemon Myrtle, but I am not sure since it is a plant I am unfamiliar with. The aroma of the liquid smells very mild and herbal with notes of honey.
The taste is odd. You first get a tingly mouthfeel from the mint and a sweet aftertaste with the anise taste of fennel, but other than that the flavor seems muddied. I can detect hints of the basil and white tea, but no fig and no honey. The more I drink this tea though the more it grows on me, it is like a puzzle in my mouth that I am trying to figure out…or maybe a treasure hunt for fig? I am a little disappointed by the lack of fig taste, but due to the combination of mint and fennel I think this tea would be an amazing digestion aid after a heavy meal. Plus it acts as a wonderful palette cleanser, because that is what fennel is amazing for (also making your mouth smell good, woohoo!)