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I love that the dry leaf smells warm – like cinnamon apples steaming inside a freshly baked crust.

But I think that the dried apple bits that are in the dry leaf almost have a hibiscus effect here – they make the tea very tart even at the 3 minute mark. It’s a balancing act though because I like the strength of the base at 3 minutes – just not the extra astringence from the fruit. In other words, I need sugar to help bring the two flavors together.

Once the sugar gets added it is perfect – apple cider-esque with a cinnamon pastry feel on the end. I love apple pie, and this is a great way to have it without going through the prep work of the real thing. Yay for instant gratification!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec

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I have come to the point (as of October 2014) where quality in tea is more important than quantity. Especially because I’m a seasonal tea drinker where hot tea is concerned, and a SLOW one to boot. I generally don’t resteep only because I’d be here all day if I did, though I do break out a gaiwan from time to time.

I adore French teas in practically every iteration, Japanese Sencha (specifically from the Uji region, as they offer the most seaweed flavor), and Dan Cong oolongs. I am trying to focus on plain teas and so companies like Verdant, Upton, and Butiki are on my favorites list.

When it comes to tea, I feel like the 10th Doctor says it best:

“Tea! That’s all I needed! Good cup of tea! Super-heated infusion of free-radicals and tannin, just the thing for healing the synapses. "

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Atlanta, GA

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