3 tsp. tea leaves, 500 ml. water, at below parameters.
This tea is probably one of the most challenging I’ve ever drank. I’ve been having a hard time nailing the parameters, it seems to aggravate my throat if I drink it too quickly (this time, at least), and my tongue plays tricks on me – it’s like it gets used to the flavor so that I stop being able to pick up on anything but black tea after the first few sips. I have to take ‘breaks’ from this to resensitize my palate, if that makes sense. Low maintenance it is not, but dangit, I keep getting these tantalizing hints of what this tastes like in it’s fully glory, so I AM NOT GIVING UP.
So, for this round: I tried steeping it slightly longer and letting it cool before trying it without additives, in order to accurately assess the flavor. Strangely having a slightly longer steep time didn’t really make it bitter, like I thought it would. I got more of a pancakes and maple scent in the steeped tea this time, and hints of butter in the tea itself. First cup of tea with no additives really irritated my throat though (strange, and I wanted to make note of it for future reference), so on the second I added some half and half.
I really like the thickness of this tea even when it’s plain, but the second cup has pretty much changed my life for the better. The half and half really brought things together – fleshed out the butter taste and soothed that itch in my throat from the first cup. I think it will need sugar to go the rest of the way towards awesome, but that is OK – I have figured out this tea and it’s Friday and therefore all is right with the world.
[notes for next time: creamer, sugar, below parameters, allow to cool. Done and done!]