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It’s fun to get a tea treat (thanks, Doulton!) that you have no preconceived notions about and then to be absolutely blown away by how good it is. As good as getting a birthday present.

This is an excellent pairing, It steeped almost a dark walnut color; smells fruity and barky. The first word that popped into my mind when I tasted this was “clarity .” It’s not murky or bitter (Darjeelings can turn on you if you’re not careful); must be the snappy Yunnan keeping it in line.

A lovely warm-me-up after being out on a chill and soggish day.

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Somebody asked me once when I became a tea junkie; I think it dates back to college when I needed caffeine for a 7 a.m. class but chose not to do coffee. My favorite teapot is a medium-sized Brown Betty given to me by my Mema; the painted flowers are chipping off, but the size and feel is perfect. I rejoice when I get a morning to brew a pot of loose tea starting with a kettle; not a bag and a hot pot.

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Southwest Missouri

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