This is the fourth Samovar sample I’ve tried and I’m starting to wonder if I’ll ever run across something of theirs I don’t like.
As a recent inductee to the smoky fan club, I was delighted with the smell of the dry leaves, which reminded me of how my dad’s pipes smelled after he’d smoked them. I realize that this may not sound that appealing, but I’ve always loved the smell of really good pipe tobacco. It’s a smell one doesn’t run across that much anymore now that the health dangers of pipe smoking are so well documented, but to me it’s reminiscent of an era of narrow ties, Fedoras, and big honking cars with fins.
The aroma is smoky as well, with that campfire thing going on, but I can also smell the fruit. I didn’t make the preparations necessary to taste this the traditional way — I’m drinking it straight up, but it is quite enjoyable without any additives at all and I am eager to give it a try the traditional way.
This is a beautiful, sophisticated tea. There’s a smoothness to it that I’ve come to expect from Samovar’s blends, and which I really adore. As with the others I’ve tasted, all of the flavors work together harmoniously; the piney/smokiness, the fruity/nutty upswing from the lychee, the sweet finish with an extremely interesting warm/cool after-effect on the tongue. I feel a foresty coolness in my mouth, but there’s a little heat and bite there as well.
I don’t need a crystal ball to see a very large Samovar order in my future…