91

3 minutes was a tad much to steep if I were going to have this plain. To be fair, the recommendation was for 2 minutes but I just can’t seem to fathom that would be enough with a black tea. I need to have more faith I suppose :).

Luckily, I wanted this with milk and sugar for breakfast so the fact that it was quite strong was not a problem – in fact it was probably a good thing because the flavor didn’t get overrun by the additives. I didn’t realize that this had some yerba mate in it until I was scooping the leaves into the Breville, though. I don’t think I’ve got a sensitivity to mate, but this will surely let me know one way or the other!

The smell is very much the same from dry to steeped leaf, and the subsequent liquor. There is mostly banana and kind of a hint of something bready underneath. It did remind me of the smell of 52Teas Pancake Breakfast, so I guess that association probably is due to some maple scent as well. I don’t get banana pancakes, but I do get banana, and then a stack of pancakes, if that makes sense?

Tastewise this reminds me of Hot Buttered Banana bread, from 52Teas – bread notes, banana, and honey. The honey note changes periodically to seem like it might want to be maple syrup – and when that happens it transitions from banana bread to syrup laden pancakes. I’m fine with whichever, honestly, and I like that it’s being so indecisive because that makes for an interesting cup!

Hands down the best part about this tea is that it’s going to be my substitute for the Hot Buttered Banana Bread I’ve been rationing. I’m so glad I was able to find something like this!!!

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 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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