DeliriumsFrogs is the best friend a girl could want—she sent me a care package loaded with goodies (import chocolate bars!!), including this tea, just because she noticed I was curious about it. :D She is a master empath and I love her.
It doesn’t surprise me one bit this is a Butiki offering—it’s subtly beautiful and quite unusual. You know right away it’s not a black tea—it brews up a gorgeous bright light orange hue—but something about it tends to make one think of certain special Darjeelings without actually tasting just like one. There’s this nutty, almost savory yet also still sweet quality to it that reminds me a lot of some of the best green teas, but a floral note too that again, brings to mind the muscatel wonder of a Darjeeling without actually being that note precisely. And amazingly, there is in fact a tobacco note—not smoke, mind you, but unlit tobacco. And yet there’s nothing really exactly woody or grassy here. The body is marvelously silky, and there’s a cleanness to the end of the sip I quite enjoy.
The dry tobacco’s what sets this apart most, I think, and it works wonderfully with the floral and nutty elements, and especially the silkiness. This isn’t a tea to drink while distracted—it’s got a lot of unusual stuff going on, and deserves full attention. It’s an experience more than a blank comfort, if that makes sense; it reminds me of some of the perfumes I’ve sampled recently that are complex and special, more than mere adornment. And yet it’s not hard to drink at all, not “avant garde”. I feel lucky to have this chance to experience it.