I ordered December as part of my first purchase from Whispering Pines Tea Company. And wow, I’m impressed! I enjoy smoky teas, as well as teas with chocolate notes. This blend has both, and as I might have expected, it’s delicious.

In the bag, the dry leaves have a strong smoky scent. When steeped, the smoke gets softer, with just a hint of sweetness behind it. Judging by the aroma, I thought the tea would taste smoky, with hints of chocolate. But I was wrong! When sipped, December is almost all chocolate notes, coupled with the smooth malty flavor of a high-quality black tea. The chocolate note is definitely dark chocolate, and the smoke is still there, but it’s mostly a subtle aftertaste. This tea holds up well to resteeping. On the second cup, I still get strong notes of chocolate, along with a little smoke. The third cup is lighter, with an almost mineral taste and hints of cocoa.

For the past year, I’ve been searching for a light smoky tea that doesn’t taste like a campfire. (I kind of like that ashy flavor, but I have to be in the right mood for it!) With December, I’ve found the perfect smoky blend for me. It’s a black tea, first and foremost: malty and smooth as silk. And while it doesn’t have any added chocolate flavoring, it has surprisingly strong cocoa notes. Basically, it’s a blend for tea lovers who are also chocolate lovers. The subtle smokiness makes it perfect for fall, too! I’m sure I’ll be forced to restock, on the unhappy day when I run out. (And thank you, fellow Steepster users, for alerting me to Whispering Pines Tea Company, and introducing me to this amazing blend.)

Whispering Pines Tea Company

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Whispering Pines Tea Company

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I’m a writer who drinks tea to survive the creative process. A few years ago, I discovered the joys of loose leaf, and I’ve been hoarding all kinds of tea ever since!

My favorite teas change by the day. I usually drink them unsweetened, without milk. I like white and green teas, but I tend to prefer black and oolong these days. Rooibos can be hit-or-miss, same with herbals. (I mostly avoid blends with hibiscus, as I find it too tart, and I’m not a huge mint fan.) But I love when I find a good herbal that I can enjoy when I don’t want caffeine. I’m actively searching for tasty blends with chamomile in them.

I enjoy both flavored and straight teas. Some of my favorite flavors are vanilla, spice, apple, orange, chocolate, and peach. I’m obsessed with ginger. Seriously. I’ve been known to add extra ginger to teas that already have absurd amounts of spice in them. You’ve been warned. ;)





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