I tried this again this morning and the results were much better even though I didn’t do much that was different. Mindful of the green tea content, I used cool-ish water and steeped just under three minutes.
When I looked into the infuser as I removed it from the water, the green leaves were prominent even though black tea is listed as the first ingredient. Maybe the contents of the packet resettled and the green was closer to the top. I looked into the remainder of the dry leaves in the sample packet and judged the black and green to be about even, with perhaps a slight edge of the black. So we’ll see what happens next time.
When I sipped, there was still that edge of bitterness but it was not nearly as pronounced as my first taste a month or so ago. Whatever the black tea was that Old Wilmington used in my samples of Royal Blend and Lord John Grey, three minutes does seem to be the tipping point regardless of water temperature.
I decided to try warming it up again and adding half and half. Now I’m geting a sweet, subtle jasmine tea scent and flavor, and the bitterness has been overcome. I don’t think the cornflower petals contribute much except a pretty blue color accent — there aren’t many of them.
I’m raising my rating of this tea. It definitely warrants experimentation, and the black tea added to the usual green in jasmine tea adds substance. The trick is finding one’s own balance of astringency and body vs. bitterness.
I may buy this again to experiment more on my own. But I have at least one and probably two large cups of tea left in my sample.