First off, I need to say thank you to Doulton! I was one of the winners of the Dragon Ball Giveaway (see thread here: http://steepster.com/discuss/501-dragon-ball-giveaway ). I had never heard of Silk Road Teas, but after tasting these balls, I will be sure to place an order from them. [Also, I need to give a preemptive “that’s what she said,” because this tasting note is going to be nuts – no pun intended]
I also need to say that these balls were alarmingly huge. Everyone – my self included – who has ever had Adagio’s Black Dragon Pearls remarked about how large those are. These are easily 2 to 3 times as large! Like I said, it was startling. As you can see here – http://www.flickr.com/photos/47736372@N04/4531751436/ – they are about the size of an iPod Classic scroll wheel.
Doulton enclosed a note with the package (written using what appears to be a lovely fountain pen – I do love fountain pens) saying that the balls would need a bit of prodding to get them to open up completely. This is true; I plunked them in the water and they just sank to the bottom and sat there until I took out a spoon and knocked them around a bit. When they were done steeping, the water had turned a lovely orange color – http://www.flickr.com/photos/47736372@N04/4531755036/ . No, that isn’t an ice cube in my mug. It’s the reflection of the beaded lampshade I was using for light (my photography skills leave much to be desired).
This is a black oolong, my favorite kind. It’s extremely smooth and slightly buttery. It is sweet on its own, no sugar needed. The aftertaste is slightly woody. The tea as a whole is more than slightly delicious. As I said in the beginning, I will be ordering these for myself.
Doulton, I know I have said this many times before, but thank you! Your tea giveaway was a lovely idea!