517 Tasting Notes
Oooo… this is a good one.
I couldn’t resist the last Rue La La sale on Kusmi certificates and I’m glad I didn’t. I have wanted to try several for quite awhile and now I can! It was an embarrassing wealth of tea that was on my table this afternoon. :)
This was the first one I have tried. It’s super malty and very dark and earthy. A hint of bitter as it cools – I may have oversteeped a tad since it seemed very light in color at 3 minutes.
If this holds up well to a second steep, it will definitely need to be kept in the stash.
I had several cups of this one hot afternoon before dinner. I wanted something but hot Chai Bora wasn’t sounding good.
This was very refreshing. Not as strong a mint as I’ve had in other brands but altogether acceptable. Enough so that I did grab a box of it at the airport.
Yay for having tea waiting when I get home from vacation!
This tastes very much like a darjeeling to me. Bright, clean, snappy, mild hint of fruit. I had been anticipating a bit more heft, but that’s not a bad thing. No bitterness or astringency in this cup. I will need to try it several times more to see if I can suss out the other flavors.
This was what they told me I had on the plane from Amsterdam to Kenya. May or may not have been. It was on Kenya Air so I’d say it was likely. I did not see the bag though – it was served already brewed.
It was good. A strong, basic supermarket level of black tea. I had a shot of Amarula after dinner, though and I had a bit left when they brought the tea. Adding the splash of Amarula to this tea made it very, very good. It smoothed it out and made it creamy while bringing a hint of fruit flavor to the cup. I’m definitely going to experiment with Amarula in some basic black teas.
And here are some pictures from the trip.
Not the best. These were all from my phone so I’d have some to use quickly for blog posts. The real pictures from the semi-pro will take awhile to clean up for viewing. He’s a perfectionist like that. :)
I had the bagged version of this at Houston Hobby Airport today on the last leg of the journey home. There were 2 bags in my 20 ounce cup. I generally would leave the bags in when I get them from coffee places like this, but after about 5 minutes I could tell that it would get way too strong so I pulled them out.
This was good. I liked it quite a bit. Well enough in fact to go to the hassle of taking it on the plane. Mostly I just throw away whatever I haven’t finished by the time the plane boards so I don’t have to juggle it while putting luggage away and getting settled.
This was the only Tanzanian tea I tried while gone. I had it most mornings. It is a basic bagged black tea. It meets my expectations for a supermarket tea. I generally just left the bag in the cup until I was pretty much finished and it didn’t get bitter.
It was decent and I wouldn’t turn down a cup if offered. Probably wouldn’t keep it in stock though.
Co-worker and I split this sample today. We both quite liked it. Neither of us got any smoke at all, but that’s not a bad thing for me. :) Definitely got the dark fruit flavors. This was a much lighter cup than either of us expected, given the description. There was something in the background – co-worker suggested maybe a flavor like a green tea – I’m not sure what I think it was but there was an unexpected note for sure.
I will say that this is pretty forgiving. I started steeping, forgot about it, went off to have a short meeting with someone and came back about 8 minutes later. Not a bit of bitterness.
Neither of us thinks we’d keep it around on a regular basis, but if there was a super sale… maybe. :)
I added this one as a different tea since the other full leaf Nahorhabi said 2010 on it and the notes were all from a year ago. I believe this is the batch for this year based on Harney listing it with their new teas about a month ago or so.
This was deep, rich and malty to the extreme. So malty I felt a bit furtive while drinking it at work. Almost like I had a no-no beverage in the workplace! As it cooled, a buttery texture infiltrated the cup and made it even better. The only downside to this was that the second cup was not as punchy.
This is a sample that will pay off. I can justify the price of this one. :) Next time they do $25 free shipping and I haven’t just placed 2 other orders…a tin of this one will be mine. Oh, yes. It will be mine.
Holy smokes, Batman!
I got a sample of this to share with a co-worker who also likes the Golden Monkey/Yunnan types of teas. Made up a pot this afternoon and at first sniff I wondered if they’d put Lapsang in the bag by mistake. I just can’t do Lapsangs. That smell of charcoal and smoke – nothing my brain thinks I need to be drinking. I made myself take a sip and good grief – there’s a whopping ton of smoke in here!
There may have been other notes to get but I couldn’t get past the heavy, ashy smoke. Co-worker also thought it was smoke heavy but he didn’t find it quite as unpleasant as I did. I would not call this a medium body nor is there anything subtle about it. As it cooled off I could get a bit of sweetness but it was a deeply smoky sweetness. From the descriptions and reviews here and on the Harney site, I was pretty disappointed in this one. I’m glad I only got a sample and I’m glad we used it all making a large pot of it. I hate to throw tea away.
Rating is low not because I didn’t like it personally, but because I don’t feel that it measured up to the description.