A Steepster regular, I’ve long been exposed to rave reviews of 52teas blends. I’m just getting to taste some of them myself. To be honest, I prefer Della Terra blends, so far, but I’m keeping an open mind and giving each new-to-me blend a blank slate. I know everyone’s tastes are different, but it’s so, so, so hard not to feel at least a little disappointed when I can’t share in everyone’s enthusiasm. This, I feel, is the curse of reading tasting notes and buying into the hype. Not that I’ll stop doing either, of course, so I’m just resigning myself to it. =)
Here, the dry leaf smells very sweet. Blindfolded, I likely would have guessed maple syrup, but not pancakes. It is instinct for me to stick my nose in the packet, and I really have to stop doing this. It creates a false notion of how the tea is supposed to smell and taste. For example, when I put a teaspoon into my infuser and smelled that, the maple fragrance was there but a lot less prominent—more modest and more realistic. Had I stuck with that, I would’ve been better prepared for what, in the end, was not a very bold flavour. The brewed tea muted the maple fragrance even further, and smelled mostly like black tea to me.
The flavour is quite accurate, just not very strong. There is a good balance of black tea, maple, and pancakes here (like others, I’ve no idea how 52teas managed to capture that, but there you have it). Perhaps I didn’t use enough leaf? I can try some more next time, I just wanted to avoid the 52teas black tea blend curse of bitterness (at which I was successful, by the way). I have also read, several times, that 52teas blends need to be left alone for a bit and are much more flavourful after some time. The only thing is that I don’t know how long I am supposed to wait. It has been about two months, is that enough?
I do love the tea, but I was expecting to be in love with it. Perhaps that’ll come, in time, but it’s okay if it doesn’t. I am looking forward to playing with the preparation in the future; maybe there’s another way that I will find yummier.
Tea amount: 1 tsp/~4.75g
Water amount: 6oz/~175mL
Additives: 1 tsp maple syrup
Aside: I got to use my new spill-proof, smaller-than-16oz mug! It’s this one, in case you’re interested: http://oxo.com/p-1133-single-serve-liquiseal-travel-mug.aspx. I am a little bit annoyed with myself: I was so excited to find a mug close in size to what I wanted (6-8oz) that I didn’t consider anything else, like how frustrating that lid will be to clean when the tea has milk in it. Oh well, I’ll just have to make sure I don’t get lazy and at least soak it in hot water straightaway. Other than that little niggle, it’s pretty much perfect.