Well, I’m an idiot. As I pulled this tea out and smelled it, I kept thinking, “This is not like any Darjeeling I’ve encountered.” Well, of course I haven’t had many Darjeelings outside of Twinings, so there you go.
I was expecting black tea. Instead, the leaves are greenish white, and the tea has that hay smell. Luckily I used my good sense and decided NOT to brew this like a black tea. I still steeped it a little high…190º for 2.5 mins. Luckily, I didn’t kill it.
It’s smooth, with a bit of the flavor and bitterness of black tea. There’s something about the aftertaste of it that reminds me of mint and soap, though I can’t think why. It’s very faint, and only mildly annoying. It’s probably my fault. There’s a little hay in there and a mild, mild, mild astringency.
A shorter, cooler steep of the same leaves reveals the same flavors at a lower strength. Overall, I’d say, “Meh.”
Flavors: Astringent, Bitter, Hay, Mint, Soap