I need tea before I am operational this morning. Until I have more caffeine running through my blood stream, I cannot guarantee to make sense.
Sample from Arbor Teas that The Final Sipdown has encouraged me to bust open finally. This tea is now officially part of the epic EG hunt for the husband. Okay, maybe it isn’t epic but it sure feels that way since I have so many EG samples in my pantry. SO. MANY.
The smell of the dry leaves is very nice – potently EG in a way that manages to be strong but not OMG-at-the-bergamot-it-burns strong (I’m looking at you, Upton’s Extra Bergamot). There’s even a nice menthol-type whoosh at the end of the sniff which strikes me as fun (and much better than the more perfume-y after-smells that can pop up in EG).
Without additives. This is really nicely done. The tea feels heavy and smooth and clear but there’s no bitterness that sometimes pops up with additive-less flavored teas. The bergamot isn’t as strong in smell or in taste as it is in the dry leaves but it seems to mesh with the tea flavor and smell instead of sitting on top of it. There’s no chemical aftertaste, no tacky-mouth feeling from the flavoring. The bergamot flavor is nicely balanced – there’s a hint of sweetness to the flavoring but not so much that I would say this is sweet (though sometimes the aftertaste is a bit fruity-sweet which is pleasant). The overall taste is noticeably (but not overpowering) bergamot throughout the sip – from initial smell to aftertaste – and a tea tastes that, while not overly nuanced, gives a full, unmuddied flavor and a smooth but somewhat thick mouthfeel.
Honestly? Best EG I’ve had in the EG Hunt. There’s one Upton EG that might compete with it (their premium or supreme or something) but I had that one with additives and this one without so that makes me think the Arbor Tea’s one will win if there is a head-to-head. I do have super-fond memories of A&D’s EG – I recall it being a juicy type of EG and I really enjoyed that. But the husband didn’t and ultimately this hunt is to find his perfect EG that I also really enjoy. This tea officially makes me list of contenders two.