So there’s a wee bit of a smokey note to this tea. I say “a wee bit” because I noticed it but it didn’t set off my asthma. My mother may disagree though, because she said she came downstairs from her bedroom afraid that something in the house was burning. The ingredients just say “black tea” though, not “lapsang souchong” so I think it’s just the flavouring. It does certainly catch a hint of smoke in the smell though, as well as something else which reminded me strongly of some sort of hard booze. Unfortunately, I can’t place what. Rum, maybe?
I was perturbed by the sheer number of twigs that appeared to be in this blend until I noticed the ingredients also listed “kukicha.” OH. Well, then. Of course, thinking it was solely a black tea at that point, I had already poured just-boiled water over it, but it seemed to hold up well regardless. I am totally unfamiliar with kukicha green tea by itself, unfortunately, so I have no idea what it is contributing to the taste.
The tea itself is surprisingly laid-back and mellow. I really expected more punch to it, but it’s not there. That’s okay; it’s quite nice regardless, with a mild sweet spice to it and a creaminess at the back. I felt it was a little weak though, even at a 4 minute steep. So I naturally did what you’d do to any weak black tea – right? – and poured milk into it. I mean, why not?
It’s great with some milk, warm and comforting. But…overall, it’s just a wee bit bland, oddly enough. I’d take either Pumpkin Chai or Glitter & Gold over this one, yet I also feel like this is maybe one that could grow on me. I don’t normally review on the first cup – I like to let the impressions of several cups come together – so I may come back to this one and re-review anything about this tea I may have missed.