I was in the mood for something decaf, and I remembered I had a Vanilla Comoro sample from Harney!
I have to say, this has moved up to the pantheon of my favorite decaf teas. But I was a bit skeptical at first. I opened the little packet, took a big whiff, and went, “Hrm.” This one kind of smells a bit artificial. The vanilla isn’t as soft as SerendipiTEA’s Colonille. It’s kind of a candied vanilla smell. The leaves range from somewhat broken to pretty big and wiry, and you can clearly pick out the vanilla bits.
I steeped this one up anyway, and poured. The infusion is dark. Very dark. And the wet leaves smell like black tea. The infusion itself though… smelled like baked vanilla goods! I was actually quite surprised, but there is a really strong, bake-y element to this one’s aroma. So I began to feel a bit more confident…
The first sip of this one, and I’m content. It’s better than the Madagascar Vanilla by Golden Moon, even though it’s decaf. I can’t identify the black base, but it’s pretty robust and brisk. The vanilla is pretty creamy in this one. Not as soft as Colonille, and a bit more assertive, but it’s actually pretty natural-tasting, and leaves a pleasant sweetness on the tongue. The bake-y doesn’t really come out in the taste, which is a bit of a disappointment, but the tea itself is really nice to drink.
I was also happy that the tea didn’t get heavier as the cup cooled. The balance stayed pretty much on target.
Very comforting, especially as a late-night drink! Is this the best vanilla? Nah, Colonille still holds the top spot. But it’s a very good vanilla black, especially for something decaffeinated.