I steeped this straight up, just like a regular tea (no milk, no sugar, no lengthened steep time, etc.) and I was pleasantly surprised by a well balanced tea that has a nice spicy kick to it without being overpowering or overly aggressive.
The aroma has a good amount of spice to it, though I’d say that the taste is stronger than the aroma would have you believe. The color is also fantastic, with the rich, golden/caramel color coming through from the rooibos.
The vanilla leads the flavor, with an initial sweetness that’s supplemented by the rooibos base. The spicy flavor hits you a moment later, with a bite on the sides of your tongue, and a woodsy spice towards the back of your mouth. The aftertaste is a peppery spice that lingers until the next sip, and really adds to the experience.
Overall, I would say that this is a really enjoyable tea, and one that I’m going to try different steeping methods with to see if I can bring out even more of the complex flavor.