Thank you to Bonnie for this amazing sample from Teavivre!!
I woke up this morning excited to start the day! Tuesdays and Thursdays mean “swim” class with my daughter – although it’s really more like splash around in the pool at the rec center. Regardless, at 15 months old she is a ball of energy and I love the time we are able to enjoy together doing anything at all. 45 minutes of romping in the shallow end left me waterlogged and ready for brunch so it was home and happy in the kitchen next for me! Bonnie was so kind to send me a wealth of samples which I received last night, and I promptly set aside this BaiLin Gongfu knowing that it would be the perfect way to start delving into the myriad of duct tape labeled packages with steeping times and anecdotes jotted carefully across them. This was my first taste of what Teavivre has to offer and I must say that I was very impressed! I was admittedly doubtful when I saw the sample packaging, thinking that it looked more like a bag of novelty candies than tea.. however it is very efficient and locks the flavor in nicely.
After having tried other loose black teas that went vindictive and downright hostile if steeped for more than 3 or 4 minutes, I decided to play it safe and stay just inside the low end of the company’s guidelines and let it dance in the cup for 2:15 on the first go. The result was a smoothly balanced liquor of salted caramel, toffee, and signature black with just a hint of clove in the aftertaste. All in all a deliciously understated cup that left me very pleased with myself for not overdoing it! But..
I couldn’t help myself. The kettle went back on the boil and then over the unwitting leaves before they knew what was coming. 2.. 2.5.. 3.. 3.5.. 4 minutes of rolling red liquor later and I sat down to the business of hoping I hadn’t taken a beautiful thing and marred it with my ambition to pull a toasted monster from the wreckage. Oh WOW! THIS IS THE BEST BLACK TEA I HAVE EVER TASTED!! Sorry for shouting. I promise it wasn’t at you, although it was at the cup in my hands! Take every flavor I mentioned from the first steeping and crank it up 20 notches, then dip it in mocha and you might begin to get a feel for what the evil geniuses at Teavivre are concocting! Bravo!