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Recent Tasting Notes
I wasn’t sure how different this was going to be from Scottish Teatime. After all, it’s the same kind of CTC blend, should be the same flavor profile, same company…
Comparing the two, they ARE rather similar, but there are some notable differences. This one is a little more bitter, covering up that tannic, autumn leaf pile a bit more. On the bright side, this is almost completely lacking in astringency.
And believe me, after drinking Scottish Teatime and sitting through a 2 hour meeting with no water, I am all for no astringency.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Bitter, Tannic
I was afraid to try this tea again. It’s a CTC blend that I used to drink every day, and it was my fancy version of Lipton. It was fantastic brewed strong with milk and sugar at breakfast.
But then I started drinking these fancier teas, and I found that what I used to love was one dimensional or just plain bitter. So I held off reviewing this (my goal is to review everything in my cupboard at least once).
I was happy to find that I still had a taste for this. Sure, the depth is nothing at all like a Yunnan black. This tea is malty as hell, bitter, and extremely astringent. But it stands up well to milk and sugar, making it a great breakfast tea. It’s extremely tannic with notes of a wet pile of autumn leaves.
I’m glad that I haven’t yet lost this friend.
Flavors: Astringent, Autumn Leaf Pile, Bitter, Malt
How i got it: Bought it
Experience: I went with the looks and, honestly, expected less of this tea due to its humble packaging, but ended with a fairly good cup. Mildly intense aroma, mainly composed of Ceylon and a bit of Assam notes too. In one moment, I happen to sense some spiced notes, like the ones from a Chinese tea, but just for a second. Its taste is intense and lasting, simple and lacking great nuances. I could describe its flavor as a balanced mix of Ceylon and Assam, holding some likeness to a Breakfast blend. It reminded me of Basilur’s Oriental Delight, too. Malty and caramel-like notes begin the sip, to later give space to earthy (like a Kenyan tea) and mildly bitter ones, ending with muscatel. A bit of astringency is present too. A better tea than I expected!
Would i buy it again?: Have some possibilities for a change of pace in the evening cup.
1 tea bag used
Extremely bitter and flat-tasting. I was given this tea bag as a part of “student welfare week” at my school so I’m not sure how fresh it is. It smelled fruity in the bag even though it tastes like a breakfast tea. I’m guessing that this may not be a representative of the actual flavour and I will withhold my rating.
I recently did a taste test, ordering several breakfast teas and putting them in a brew-to-brew battle. Brodies came in with a definite win. This is a rich, dark tea, with a robust flavor and a lovely maltiness without getting bitter. Others were weak and light-colored in comparison.
When I’m having my daily brew I’m an impatient drinker of tea, and I love that I can pour boiling water over a bag after dinner and it has steeped in just a minute or so. If I’m in the mood to really sit down and go through the tea rituals I’ll choose something more exotic from my cupboard, but this is a great daily blend that comes out on top for me.
Compared against: Taylors of Harrogate Scottish Breakfast and English Breakfast, London English Breakfast, Harney and Sons English Breakfast, Thompson’s Family Tea Irish Breakfast.
The Leaf: They have a nice, strong, fresh aroma typical of good Assam tea. The leaves are cut fairly small, but still give a coarse look with very jagged edges and folds. There are some golden tips visible as well, composing maybe 10% of the total leaves.
The brew: It has a nice deep brownish red liquor, minimal basic aroma, and a bold flavor that lingers. The aroma is very light, but has a slight sweetness to it. The flavor is typical of an Assam, very malty, almost woody, slightly bitter with an aftertaste that is a lesser version of this. The mouthfeel is slightly thick with a definite dryness that lasts a little too long and is too strong.
I drink all of my teas cold.
A strong black tea, which I brewed for three minutes rather than the recommended four as it seems like it would oversteep very quickly. Tasty enough and takes milk well but the leaves are more like coffee grounds than leaves. It looks like Lipton’s sitting in the basket. Fortunately it is better than that.
This is a great morning tea, a perfect replacement for coffee. It has a subtle yet bold flavor, if that makes any sense. I recently stopped drinking coffee again (for the nth time) and I picked up some of this team at a European delicatessen for $12.50 (50 bags). It is seemingly a good value for when I want some good plain tea.