85

I’ve gone my whole life without fig flavored tea, and now I’m having two back to back. This was yet another of the teas I’m sharing with the Dammann Freres buying co-op thanks to the efforts of Doulton, hereinafter referred to as “Fig 2.”

The dry leaves of this one have a deeper and somewhat musky smell, and there is more going on than mere fig, though the fig contribution to the fragrance is every bit as fresh and juicy smelling as it was in Figue Fraiche. I can smell a citrus note (must be the clementine) and I can smell something bake-spicy which must be the nutmeg.

The tea’s aroma is muskier as well. The citrus moderates the fig some, and makes it seem more earthy. Fig 2 is more fig pastry-like than fresh or baked fig, which was Fig 1’s domain, but still quite nice.

I can definitely taste the Yunnan’s contribution here; it brings a full-bodied depth to the tea and gives it a malty, carmelized sweetness with a bit of astringency. The flavors blend well with it, and don’t hide behind it, but it is an interactive base rather than a passive one. The flavors swirl around in it so that sometimes they are the stronger flavor, and sometimes the tea base itself is, which makes it an interesting, mercurial drink.

I’m enjoying it quite a bit.

Preparation
Boiling 4 min, 0 sec

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Bio

I’ve updated this bio as it’s been a couple of years since I “started getting into” tea. It’s now more accurate to say that I was obsessed with tea for a while, then other things intruded, then I cycled back to it, and I seem to be continuing that in for a while, out for a while cycle. I have a short attention span, but no shortage of tea.

I’m a mom, writer, gamer, lawyer, reader, runner, traveler, and enjoyer of life, literature, art, music, thought and kindness, in no particular order. I’ve recently started writing fantasy and science fiction under the name J. J. Roth.

Personal biases: I much prefer to drink tea without additives such as milk and sugar. If a tea needs additives to improve its flavor, its unlikely I’m going to rate it high. The exception is chai, which I make on the stove top using a recipe I found here on Steepster. Rooibos and honeybush were my gateway drugs into the harder stuff, but once I learned how to make a decent cup of tea they became far less appealing to me. That said, I’m not entirely a purist, and I enjoy a good flavored tea, particularly flavored blacks.

I like all kinds of tea depending on time of day, mood, and the amount of time I have to pay attention to preparation.

Since I find others’ rating legends helpful, I added my own. I’m revising them slightly to make them less granular as I don’t really find myself hating most things I try.

I try to rate teas against other similar versions. So I rate Earl Greys, for example, against other Earl Greys, rather than against all teas. If something rates very high with me, though, it probably means it’s a stand out against all other teas I’ve tried.

95-100 A once in a lifetime experience; the best there is; will keep this stocked until the cows come home

90-94 First rate; top notch; really terrific; will definitely buy more

80-89 Excellent; likely to become a favorite, will likely buy more

70-79 Very good; would enjoy again, might buy again if in the mood for this particular one or a better, similar version not available

60-69 Good; wouldn’t pass up if offered, but probably wouldn’t buy again unless craving this particular flavor

50-59 Okay or run of the mill

Below 50 So-so, iffy, would definitely pass
or ick. The lower the number, the closer to ick.

Location

Bay Area, California

Website

http://www.jjroth.net

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