I love the smokiness of a russian tea. I guess that is the main characteristic of a “russian” tea. I usually can’t keep my russian teas with my other teas — they smell that strong. This one is more of a mild scent and flavor. It isn’t too smoky, so it could be for someone who wants to try a smoky tea and then if you like it you could try a stronger one. (The Choice Russian Caravan is pretty strong for a tea bag — one of the couple I’ve tried.) But with this one, the flavor isn’t even that strong for a black tea. It’s still good though, just mild. Maybe I should have steeped it longer and at a higher temperature.