This is a tea I received in a “Secret Santea” exchange over at www.reddit.com/r/teaexchange. I was given this story along with it: "oh another note that black tea called “Tender Lovers” has a story with it that i think makes it even tastier and special :-).
When me and my gf went on vacation last year we visited Washington state and in a strip mall in Renton there is a tea shop names Xiu Xian tea and we stayed at the store for no less than 4 hours talking with the owner all the while tasting at least 10-15 teas and multiple steeping of each.
I asked if she had any rare tea or interesting tea and she pulled out “Tender Lovers” and explained that her family had a wedding a few months ago in china and they had picked and processed this tea specifically for the wedding. She had only 3 pounds of it left and then there would be no more of that specific tea.
I know this story wasn’t bs because the woman was very honest and it wasn’t any more expensive than the other teas so she wasn’t trying to up-sell it. Hell she even had me taste it to be sure and it was “so damn good” as she would say about a lot of her teas.
So when you drink that tea it is a one of a kind!"
I’ve been putting off trying it because it sounds so special, I almost didn’t feel like I deserved to get to try it! I’m glad I do get the chance though. There weren’t any brewing instructions with it, so I went with boiling and three minutes. I always see people mentioning hints of chocolate flavor in straight black teas, but I never really got it. At least until this tea. When I finished steeping it, I picked it up to move it and got a big whiff of creamy, slightly smokey chocolate. It tasted like it smelled, very lovely and smooth, with no bitterness. I’ll play around with steep times and temperatures to see what personality this tea has.