I’ve had this a few times since I got it, but haven’t logged it.

I remember REALLY liking this when I had it at Murchie’s, so I came home with two ounces. Only to find that it… tasted quite different. I’m guessing it was a difference in tastes from the bagged fanning-form that they serve, and the loose that I went home with.

It was a bold, black tea flavour with this faint green sweetness/vegetalness underneath, just enough to compliment, and then a hint of smoke. I brought it home, and all I got what a bitter, burnt charcoal taste. Very bitter, green, not nearly as much bold black, and burnt not smoky.

So I started experimenting with my steep times and temperatures. I don’t know what temperature their water is, but I steeped it at around four minutes and it was good. No bitterness!

This time around I brought the temperature down to 180F, the steep time to 2:30, and replaced 1/4 of the tea I used with Murchie’s Assam tippy golden.

There’s a difference, and it’s a difference for the better, although I don’t like how watery it tastes with the reduced steeping time. But I know if I steep it any longer it’ll go bitter (especially since I added Assam black). Maybe I’ll have to buy a little box of their bagged stuff. Damn.

Enjoyable, though. Blacker in taste—closer to the bagged form that I remember—with a bit of a bittergreen taste, and then a faint burnt not-quite-smoky taste.

180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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A tea-drinking transgendered Canadian, currently in the third year of university, majoring in geology (yes, “rocks and things”). I take most of my tea made straight into a mug, although occasionally if I’m not in a hurry (this isn’t often), I’ll have time to sit down with a pot or with the full gongfu set. It’s the highlight of a good day if I have time for a pot.

My notes and reviews will often sound dis-jointed, repetitive and confused, as I tend not to work on them as a whole, but rather add notes as I sip without rereading what I’ve already typed.

I take my tea straight, with the exception of chais (or matcha); very rarely, I’ll sweeten things the Russian way. I also have a soft spot for earl greys.

I keep a teatra.de blog for reviewing and rambling about tea books/publications.

And I’m a Doctor Who fanatic (Jon Pertwee, if you were wondering).

“But you should never turn down tea, when it’s offered. It’s impolite, and impoliteness is how wars start.” ~Eighth Doctor, Paul McGann


BC, Canada



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