First, thanks to Brenden for the opportunity to sample your teas!
This tea is wonderfully subtle and calming. It does, indeed, evoke a feeling of being in the woods. There’s the slight hint of smoke, the freshness of the lemon grass and spearmint, and the barely-there suggestion of sweetness.
I am not a big fan of spearmint, though I’m learning to enjoy it in blends with other flavors. This way it just tastes wild, in a good way, without the cloying flavor I’ve associated with it in after-dinner mints and chewing gum.
Somewhere Brenden recommended a second steep, six instead of five minutes. I’ll definitely be trying that too.
This is not something I’d drink every day, but it is definitely going on my shopping list. Some people dream of tropical vacations and the beach, but I dream of deserts and pine-covered mountains. This tea takes me right there to the high country. I’m looking forward to the rest of my samples.
Update: re-steeping per the recommendation in comments on Amy Oh’s tasting note. The liquid is still dark, dark, dark, but the smoky taste is just about gone and the lemon is predominant with a minty aftertaste. I was not expecting such a strong flavor from a re-steep. I think I prefer the smokiness in my first cup, but this is also good — just in a different way. And there is no bitterness at all despite the two rather long steeps. This is a winner.