I gotta remember to back off the steep time just a hair with this one. The savory taste of the sesame doesn’t need a super-bold tea taste behind it. It can make it a bit overwhelming.
I usually pick a certain type of tea in the mornings before work. Stout enough that it helps me wake up but gentle enough that it isn’t a mean wake up since my stomach usually wakes up about 2 – 3 hours after I do. Anyway, I wasn’t 100% sure about having this as a morning, take-to-work-in-my-tumbler tea. But I figured what the heck, right? I added a little bit of sugar (1/2 teaspoon for my 12oz) and off I went.
Okay, I haven’t tried this with milk yet but I think I’m going to the next time I decide to start my work day off with this. The savoriness was a bit abrupt for me this morning. It was good and I liked it, but the first few sips were a bit shocking. Not a gentle wake up tea. Of course, I miiiiiiight have made it a wee bit strong (when I’m tired in the morning (aka ALWAYS) I tend to be a bit heavy handed with the leaf weight). But I think in a few hours I could have handled the tea much better. I still had some left when I got to work (unusual for me but again, it took a bit to gear me up for this) and by that time, all of me was fully awake and thought this tea was a fantastic idea.
Taste-wise, still as yummy as my first experience with this. Hello toasted sesame! I’m not craving unadon from it though, but that could be because unadon just isn’t a morning dish. Mmm, unadon. Anyway. The mouth-feel on this puppy is… AMAZING. My fukamushi from last night had less savory mouth-feel that this one (though I blame part of that on my decision to use a metal strainer, not my kyusu with the sasame filter – and how big of a dork does that sentence make me?). Post-tea I’m kind of left with the feeling that I need to brush my teeth. Not so much for the taste because I’m kind of grooving on that but for the mouth-feel-created-fuzz-factor-feeling. It rivals the tooth sweater feeling first thing in the morning. Kind of fantastic that it can be that thick tasting but weird in a black.
Randomly, I think if I were to add yak butter to any tea, I’d want the tea to be like this. The tea is strong enough and bold enough in flavor that I don’t imagine butter – even yak butter (which I equate to having a taste similar to goat cheese because, you know, it’s a YAK) – would be able to overtake the tea. Of course, I don’t imagine ANY tea could overtake yak butter but at least a tea like this would have a fighting chance of not being overpowered and, in my mind, balance out the tea/yak taste experience.
Not that I plan on adding yak butter to any of my teas. But you know, if I had to.
Without fail, adding a little sugar and milk, this tea always brings to mind the sweet sauce on unadon. I now crave eel.
Drinking a second steep from this weekend iced.
Yeah, not thrilling. At first I didn’t remember what tea it was. Sipping on it didn’t help. So I poured it into a glass so I could see it. Ah, it’s a black tea. That’s a bit surprising. Must be the sesame tea then.
No sugar but iced it only has a bit of bitter at the end that really mostly comes out as astringency/dryness. Oops, I say that but as it warms up that astringency is getting more and more bitter. So okay, iced even, this one needs a little sugar for me.
The big disappointment is that there is zero sesame flavor to it. I suppose all of the added flavor went away in the first steep so it looks like this tea won’t be a good resteeper. As a non-flavored tea, the 2nd steep isn’t bad (though again, needs a little sugar – or maybe a shorter steep time though I don’t recall what I did when I made this).
This doesn’t change my rating for this tea though. How a tea tastes in its natural habitat (hot) is what I tend to really care about when picking/judging teas. Icing later steeps is just a bonus. I am a bit curious how a fully-flavored first steep of this tea would taste iced but eh, I’m probably not going to find out. (Well, unless someone tells me – that’d be cool).