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Recent Tasting Notes
I like blooming teas, and Adagio’s were my first introduction to them. So I do have a special sort of nostalgia for them, even though I don’t like the packaging. (It seems like such a waste of material to have each bloom individually bagged and in a box. It’d be much more environmentally friendly to chuck them all in a tin or single bag, yes?)
That said, I’m not terribly enthusiastic about the Red Bloom. It’s a very generic sort of black tea (or maybe I just don’t have enough experience with unflavored black teas to differentiate between the many varieties) and although the amber liquid looked very pretty in my glass teapot (usually busted out only for pearls and blooming teas) and the unfurling of the flower is always fun to watch, it was unspectacular in flavor.
I usually can get two-three pots (I think my glass pot holds between 23-28 oz) from each flower before the flavor’s too weak to go on. It’s a great tea for showing off to tea newbies, but for the experienced connoisseur who prefers flavor over pretty tricks, skip the show and give ’em something yummier.
I will probably never give a tea a perfect rating. This tea took me by surprise; the leaves look plain and don’t smell special at all. They have the annoying characteristic of greens and whites in that they are harder to measure because of their size and shape.
The flavor of this tea is beyond excellent. Take the 3 major qualities of green tea (toast, sweet, vegital) and blend them together so that all of them are distinct and compliment each other simultaneously while maintaining a very full mouth.
Just try it. I can’t even explain properly.
To my delight, this beautifully made tea greets me with a fruity, toasty nose. Two tsp of the loose, open blend are measured into my pre-heated, closed infuser for a 12-oz mug. The golden medium-amber liquor is smooth, with just a hint of astringency. The tea’s description begins with Keemun, so the smoke and fruit notes must hark from that Chinese region, rather than an Indian Darjeeling (more commonly used in EB blends). Quite good plain, there was only a tablespoon or two left when I added a tsp of vanilla soy milk. The result was a bit more richness and sweetness, without detracting from the true black-tea effect — a nice mix. The wholeness of the brewed leaves was attested to by how quickly the infuser rinsed out. The use of Keemun in this English Breakfast blend makes it stand out amongst the better ones I’ve tasted. It’s flavor and aroma lingered in my satisfied smile!
I didn’t put anything extra in this tea.
When brewed the color is extremely light but, I brew a pot at a time instead of a cup and if you do this you will notice that the tea gains color as it cools like most whites and minimally processed greens. So its lack of color just seems normal to me.
The flavor starts sweet, hits a little wall of toast and jumps it so fast you’ll wonder if you imagined it. The finish goes right back to sweet. Sweetness that doesn’t go away for an extremely long time.
This is a great tea for non-obtrusive tea drinkers.
I had an idea that it would work well as a palate cleansing tea because of the extremely long finish and stubbornly sweet qualities. It does work well to remove strong sweet flavors like fruity cookie samplers but for thai spicy kind of food it was more of a pleasant compliment than a palate cleanser. I was not expecting that at all but it’s lean to compliment spicy makes me thing that this might be a more oily tea.
Anyways… I find food and tea combos interesting.
Okay, I was a bit nervous trying this. If it is supposed to be best iced, that usually means I will find it too fruity/tart/sweet/something hot and not enjoy it. But this was pretty good. I can’t really pick out the flavors all that well but they blend nicely to have an overall fruity taste. If pressed, I’d say the coconut can be tasted at the beginning and the pina colada gives it a fruity finish. Not sure where the lime plays in though maybe in the aftertaste I get a bit of that? I haven’t had lime tea by itself before so I don’t know the flavor well enough to pick it out. Anyway, the flavors go together nicely and the overall feeling is a bit tropical/fruity but no so much so that I forget I’m drinking tea (vs. and herbal) so I like it.