I’ve had this in my cupboard for a while along with a number of other teas from my initial Tavalon order and I’m just now getting to them. (Yes, I am on serious lockdown. I am considering not coming out until I actually need tea, which could be a year from now.)
I am a sucker for names sometimes, and I spend a lot of time homesick for my old Upper West Side neighborhood. So of course, I had to try this.
The dry leaves look sort of twiggy, like Ceylon leaves sometimes do, but they also seem a bit heftier than Ceylon leaves. They smell like Assam to me. I’m guessing both of those are represented in this blend.
The liquor is medium amber with a twinge of red. Not quite the russet beauty that some other Ceylons produce in my cup, but its an intriguing color. The aroma is fruity, and somewhat malty-sweet.
This tea has a lot of substance to it, though exactly what makes that up isn’t readily apparent. I guess that’s what makes it NYC breakfast; it’s very much like most of my New Yorker friends. This is not a shallow tea, though it’s not overly complex. It’s pretty smooth, and slightly stout. Not really sweet, but not bitter. It doesn’t make you go “yum” but it has something sophisticated about it. It’s not as brash as some stronger breakfast blends. It’s just enough to get your eyes open while you wait for the subway to show up. Or to give you an edge while you’re sitting on the steps of the Met in the autumn chill, before you go in to get lost in an exhibit for a while. It makes me think of Central Park, undoubtedly because of the name. I may be gullible, but I get it.
And now I’m homesick.