I’m not really sure how good this particular darjeeling is as compares to other darjeelings, but it was basically exactly what I wanted right now, and it’s really hitting the spot.
So much of the nose of this tea reminds me of the Royal Garland I have from Samovar, despite the fact that I’ve been brewing the latter at 175. I probably would’ve made more mention of that in my Royal Garland note had I more experience with plain darjeeling tea, but there you go…always learning. They both seem to have the same ‘high’ notes, and the differences are largely in the foundation on which those notes rest; in Garland they’re obviously the buttery floral roundness of oolong; here in this cup, they’re less complex, black tea touched by a very subtle reminder of raisins, as with many black teas.
I fully expect that the sweet muscat-y fruity tang that’s foremost when very hot will mellow down to something less tangy and more bready as the cup cools, in just the same way as it did with the garland, but I actually picked this out of the cabinet feeling like I wanted some of that tangy grapeskin taste, so it may not survive quite long enough for the tea’s edges to round themselves off.
There’s a thickness to the tea mid-tongue that reminds that this is assuredly a black tea, and which melts at the end of the sip to whole-mouth shining sweetness.
…man. Nothing like a nosebleed to ruin a good zen moment with a cup of well-chosen tea. Argh. Springtime? You can stop by anytime now, for serious.