This tastes a lot like chai (unsurprising as it’s vanilla, cardamom, and Indian tea, albeit an unusual one for flavoring) without the hot spices. As such it feels more easygoing/versatile (I only ever really want chai as a singular form of dessert, almost like meal replacement on cold days, you know?), with the “spikey” flavor and texture peppery spices would’ve generated replaced by a relatively “clean”, smoothed out version of chai that manages to retain a creamy richness.
The astringent woodiness of darjeeling only really comes out at the end of the swallow; it’s not a strong or all-pervasive presence (which can be a positive or negative depending on how much you like darjeeling!). The front of the tea—the aroma steeping and freshly hot—is mostly vanilla (at first I was disappointed I couldn’t really taste the darjeeling), and then recedes to let the cardamom enter, and finally the darjeeling steps in. The lingering elements at the end of the cup are cardamom and darjeeling. The unfolding, three-act-play nature of it works because the segue between each is smooth and subtle.
This is a tea that grows on you; I was underwhelmed with the first few sips (seemed one dimensionally vanilla, kind of boring) but by the time I reached the bottom of the cup and had walked through all three flavor transformations I liked it. Also appreciate how even at the end, the aroma of real vanilla lingers, strong without being too much (tricky to balance, I find). A decent midday tea, I think. Will have to try it with some milk and/or sugar at some point.