First Verdant order, first Verdant tea. We’ll see if it’s as good as everyone’s been saying.
Dry Leaf: Smells very much like cocoa, or like dark chocolate. I’m also getting some floral aspects, maybe rose? I’m not too good at pinpointing floral smells, unless it’s lilac. Anyway…back to the tea. I’m also picking up a slight roasted smell, along with a slight creaminess.
Now onto the steeps:
Rinse (3sec): Smells roasty, or slightly smoky, with strong cocoa aspects. The floral aspect is not detected.
Taste – (Took a few sips)Very smooth, with dark chocolate aspects and an underlying toasty/roasty flavor. Fairly light, though, overall.
Steep 1 (3 sec): The scent is very much like the rinse. Roasty, dark chocolaty, this time a slight sweetness emerging. I’m also picking up some very subtle cinnamon aspects, as well as nutty aspects.
Taste- Slightly bitter dark chocolate aspects, with some cinnamon aspects popping through here and there (lingering in the aftertaste as well), and a very subtle caramel aspect. There is also a grain-like taste here that I can’t really describe. Slightly sweet, smooth, still toasty, with just a hint of spice. The aftertaste is not only cinnamon, but a slight honey note. Interesting.
Steep 2 (6sec) – Smells much like the previous steep, only a little sweeter and heavier (if anyone gets that).
Taste – This one is almost creamy. Slightly sweet, I’m getting caramel-like notes in the front of the sip along with chocolate and the roasted aspect. The cinnamon is also more pronounced in the front of the sip, and still lingers at the end as well. The honey note seems to have dissipated, but the grain/wheat taste is still around. Interesting steep.
Steep 3 (9sec) – Smells like dark chocolate, caramel, with an added hint of vanilla. Still picking up the roasty scent.
Taste: Light (in texture, not taste) cream notes (cool whip?), slightly muted dark chocolate aspects, some cinnamon, and significantly toned down roast-y aspect. Interesting. The caramel seems absent in this steep, but the honey taste is back and lingers at the end of the sip.
Steep 4 (12sec): This steep smells the most like a pan of homemade brownie mix. I’m still thinking mostly dark chocolate (or bakers chocolate), but there is a sweetness here. I’m once again detecting the caramel notes. Yay! Very slight cinnamon in this one. The cream/vanilla scent is also still present, possibly even more this time around.
Taste: It tastes just as it smells. Like a pan of brownie mix! The creamy notes are to die for in this steep; I’m really digging them. They are sweet and smooth, and they mesh well with the chocolate flavor and the caramel flavor I’m getting. The cinnamon is also playing a bigger role in this steep, present very much in the beginning of the sip. The roasty flavor is still around, but it’s toned down a bit. It actually reminds me of when you go to eat a freshly made brownie, but it’s wayyy to hot. I don’t know if this has happened to anyone else, but I always get a light smoky flavor from brownies that are too hot. Or when you microwave a brownie so it’s hot, but you leave it in there a little too long, so it burns just a smidge. It’s not a bad flavor, though. It’s just different. (Ok. Hopefully that explanation didn’t lose anyone… I was trying to be clear, but my mind’s kinda frazzled).
Steep 5 (15sec) – I’m now picking up a thick cream scent. YUM! I’m also getting stronger caramel notes. This one smells the sweetest out of them all. The bitter dark chocolate smell has pretty much disappeared in this steep, leaving more of a creamy chocolate smell in its wake. Still roasty, too, which I am actually quite appreciating in this tea.
Taste: Sweet and toasty at the same time! The toasty taste is up front, while the sweetness takes up the back of the sip. In the center they merge in a delightful way. Caramel, cream, chocolate, and subtle honey notes are all present. I’m also still picking up a slight cinnamon aspect. Yum. This was a really good steep.
I have a feeling this tea could keep going for quite a few more sessions, but I think I need a break from this one for now. Plus, I’ve got a bunch of work to get done, and I have to get over to the neighbors to watch the dogs.
Overall, I liked this tea. I didn’t think it was as out-of-this-world as most reviewers here seem to have, but I found it complex and tasty. I also like that it’s holding up very well to multiple steeps. I’m glad I bought an ounce to try.
UPDATE: Bonnie has mentioned that this tea might be best brewed Western style, so I’ll be giving that a go next time around. I will update the rating and such accordingly. Until then, I will reserve my verdict concerning whether this is a permanent cupboard dweller or not. Thanks again, Bonnie!