Cheers to Michelle for sending me this and the next Darjeeling I’ll be logging! I feel Darjeeling is a natural follow up to Oriental Beauty and often want to compare them. They both have a the muscatel thing going on, the darjeeling more so, as well as floral and woodsy notes but darjeeling feels more airy and has more high notes, it’s more flowery and peppery where as the formosa has smoother, warmer, lower notes of leather and camphor.
I don’t have a whole lot of experience with Darjeelings compared to some folks on here. I’ve had two from Teavana and one straight from Upton, plus a few in their blends and lovely white one and I got to taste a Darjeeling Oolong at Adagio. Most have been first or second flushes and while I’m sure I could look up their estates in some cases, I don’t recall them off the top up my head.
At first I feel in love with them, then I really disliked them, them I tolerated them and it seems today I am appreciating them more than I have in a long time. And this is quite nice. It starts off tasting like grape leaves and vine, woody and nice balance of green, sweet and salty. But this tea really shines when it’s cooled down, which I think is a testament to its quality, many teas turn bitter when they cool but this one only gets sweeter.
I infused this one three times, the second was my favorite and it had some nice fruity and honey notes. I felt the third tasted a bit watered down despite being steeped for 5 minutes (I actually followed recommended brewing parameter on this one somewhat, though it looks like it might have been Michelle’s recommendation rather than the merchant’s though my first infusion was close to their’s temp wise) but it did develop some interesting pepper notes and then once again sweetened when cooled. Thanks Michelle!