Aap Ki Pasand
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Recent Tasting Notes
A friend of mine bought this tea for me from India. It came in a cute little navy sachet in a gift set that also included Darjeeling and Assam. Slightly floral and smells pretty nice, and it tastes really clean. I like this tea a lot, and I can imagine it becoming a morning go-to. Takes milk very well.
Left Shanghai for a while (and also left all the tea in my cupboard!) to visit my family back home. I’m the only one who has a tea habit, so I’ve been lacking good quality loose leaf tea here to say the least. Imagine my surprise when I find that my family never even opened this Darjeeling Oolong tea that I got them as a gift from India! Slightly annoying to me, but also fortuitous! At least now I have some wonderfully fragrant tea to help me chill in the evenings :)
The most striking thing about this Darjeeling Oolong is the fragrance. There’s a wonderful herbal/floral aroma that you get a good solid whiff of right after brewing. The spice/herb scent seemed to dissipate as the tea cooled.
In terms of taste, I’m honestly not too sure how this Darjeeling Oolong is different from a standard black Darjeeling. It still has that familiar fruity flavor that a lot of darjeelings have, albeit milder and more subtle.
I’m not sure if I’m imagining it, but the tea also seems to be a bit less brisk and astringent than black Darjeelings. Not too sure though so I’ll probably have to drink some black Darjeeling when I get back to Shanghai to compare…
Overall, the flavor and aroma of this oolong is very different from Chinese or Taiwanese oolongs. A good reliable oolong, that I would recommend to anyone who wants to try something new :)
I think I might have been going about this tea all wrong. Having it with milk improves it significantly! It’s quite a revelation for me since I tend to favor not adding anything to tea that I prepare myself. Adding about 1 part milk to 4-5 parts tea to this Assam has totally changed the way I see it. (hence the increase in the score)
Before and after adding the milk I tried “pulling” the tea like they do in HK and Singapore Unfortunately since I’m nowhere near as good at “pulling tea” as the pros are, I spilled quite a bit on the table top. Oops. But in any case it was worth the effort since the tea came out smooth, creamy, and tasting like malted milk :)
I liked this so much that I’m actually now running out of Assam! I have about 1 or 2 servings left…. So for my next project, I’m going to try using condensed milk instead of fresh milk! Let’s see how that goes….
While I’ve certainly had Assam teas before as part of blends (breakfast blend bags, etc.) I’ve never had it as a “single origin” type, so I was looking forward to trying it.
My first experience with the tea wasn’t entirely pleasant, I steeped it for 5 minutes as per the instructions on the package, and the tea came out looking really dark, and had a very heavy feel and a strong, slightly bitter taste to start, becoming even more bitter as I finished the cup. The tea also had a pretty strong kick of caffeine and kept me up pretty late that night too. I clearly over-steeped. Woops.
My next attempt went a lot better. I cut the steep time to just over 3 minutes and the tea came out much better with a clear reddish brown look. It had a malty aroma and taste, even seemed to have a sweet hint of caramel. There was still a little bitter after taste towards the end of the cup, but nothing unpleasant.
I imagine this would go really well with milk so that’s up next on my tea to-do. _
P.S. – Ironically I had this tea in the evening. Will try it with a good hearty breakfast next time.
I bought this tea on a recent trip to India. They claim that this tea is used by the Indian government as a state gift, and has been given to Bill Clinton and Junichiro Koizumi, hence the name “President’s Tea”. The company also claims to have been featured in TIME magazine, but I can’t find any mention of this at all on the web.
In any case, onto the tea itself: it had me at the first whiff of its fragrance. The tea is very fragrant when brewed, floral but not overwhelmingly so; and for some reason it makes me a feel a little tingle at the back of my head when I get a whiff. The liquid is clear with a bright golden color. The tea is mildly astringent, and has a light feel on the mouth with a subtle grape flavor and scent.
I’m already kicking myself in the butt for not buying more of this tea while I was in India, but oh well, that just means I have to save this for special occasions. I would experiment by adding milk or lemon, but given how little of the tea I have I think I’ll just have it straight ;)
In sum, the best Indian tea I have had so far, and something I would recommend to anyone.
P.S. – I have the autumn harvest of this tea so I don’t know what the spring one is like.
This is a BOP Nilgiri a co-worker brought back for me from India. Reminiscent of a Ceylon, with subtle lemon-like astringency. Brisk, but not overwhelmingly so. I made it in my IngenuiTEA, and used 1 tbsp of leaf. (~ 1tsp per teacup) Added sugar. It would probably tolerate milk well, but I didn’t try it.
I suspect this would also make excellent iced tea.