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Recent Tasting Notes
These are really big pearls. In fact, they are much too big to be called pearls. Let’s just go with takgoti and call them balls. It’s a good name for these. They expand into beautiful brown leaves and brew up into a red-black liquor.
The fragrance is slightly fruity with a slight smoky note. It’s a strong tea with a slight astringency and a very slight bitter chocolate taste (I may have oversteeped it slightly). The smoky notes exist within the taste as well. It’s a good strong tea and better than I expected. Not as good as my favorite blacks but I wouldn’t toss these balls out of the room. They have a lot to offer.
When I opened my sample tin, there were a lot of big chunks of stuff on top, and the rooibos had filtered to the bottom of the tin. I stirred the tea up to distribute the ingredients better before brewing. I made this with frothed milk and honey.
Rich, strong and soothing, with a nice balance of spice. This was great after coming home from a late choir rehearsal.
So I brought the water temp down and lengthened the steep time a bit and all I can say is WOW! It’s like a whole new tea. With just those few small changes, this has gone from ho-hum tea to the apple tea that I would create if I had the skill to.
The apple flavor is crisp but not overwhelming, with just a touch of sourness to bite your tongue. It also has a pleasant sweetness that’s not too sugary, and a spicy aroma that’s inviting and invigorating.
In short: When made correctly, this tea is a winner!
Steeped this one for a couple extra minutes today, and it definitely made for a much stronger taste. I still get much more spice than apple (especially strong when smelling the tea leaves, which have a strong, spicy smell to them) and the aroma is pleasant, but the flavor has a bit of a bite to it on the finish.
I really took the time on Saturday evening to brew this correctly. The whole process took about 30 or so minutes. I had about 1 cup of cream that I added to the mix that made it superb! Diets aside, adding the rich cream was sooo good. The whole house smelled spicy and fall-y. After my husband’s initial, “you’re going to make me drink that, aren’t you?” he decided that he loved it. (I didn’t tell him it had coconut in it.)
On Sunday morning I awoke to the Thai Chai smell in the house again. I thought it might still be from the night before, but my husband crept into the bedroom with a breakfast tray of eggs in a pita pocket, a piece of homemade baklava, and the last rose from our garden. Oh yeah, and a huge steaming cup of Thai Chai for the both of us! He had snuck out of bed to start making the tea! He admitted that it was better with the cream added (he just used skim milk), but it tasted great to me because of all the thought he put into it.
As we lounged in bed eating breakfast and drinking our tea, he said to me, “Hey babe, I won’t give you a hard time if you order a much bigger bag of this stuff.” Yea!!! No more eye-rolling when he sees my tea orders!