Here’s another improperly stored sample from last year’s 12 Teas of Christmas that I didn’t quite get to. I should never have opened the parcels unless I intended to make a cup that day, since the little envelopes weren’t resealable. Oh well, too late for “should have done”s!
The aroma is interesting, though it doesn’t put me in mind of cookies. I actually get a bit of spicy chocolatey something. I’m having trouble pinning it down. Keeping in mind that the old 52Teas black tea base gets way bitter, I steeped it just about 3 minutes. Steeped aroma is very accurate to the dry leaf – something spicy (nutmeg?) and a strange cocoa. Not necessarily appealing cocoa, but it’s there. I’m more of a milk chocolate girl, sadly. Also, I HATE milk, so I’m hoping the milk part of milk and cookies doesn’t really happen. I almost never add anything to me tea as I feel that a good tea (flavoured or otherwise) shouldn’t require any help, so it’ll be interesting to see how this fares on it’s own two feet.
The initial flavour is mostly black tea, something sweet in the background (identified as brown sugar after reading the description!) and something off to the side that isn’t quite materializing. I just had pineapple for a snack so that may be amplifying the sweetness, but the brown sugar seems SO distinct to me now. I think that is probably the aroma I am mixing up with the cocoa too. The black tea is a bit too present for my liking, I wish the rest of the cookie would materialize.
I’m loving the brown sugar, though. Not getting anything in terms of cocoa, and nothing that makes me think of cookies or milk, but as a brown sugar flavoured black tea, this is solidly okay. As I sip, I am getting more hints of that black base bitterness. Perhaps a bit less leaf might have been in order. I am pretty certain this is the “old” black tea base that I wasn’t fond of, I don’t think I’m had any encounters with the new one, though I hear it’s a lot smoother.
This is one of those teas that works better hot for me, so rather than continue to type I think I shall enjoy the remainder of this as quickly as I can. This is a decent offering, though not true to it’s title. Of course, as always, this sample has been kicking around for a year so degradation of quality could always be a factor.
EDIT to add: It gets much more bitter the further I get in the cup. I gave in and added a few granules of raw sugar to make it palatable to the bottom. I wish the base weren’t overtaking everything with it’s bitterness. I had a hard enough time finding the flavours without that horning in! : )