Rakkasan Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

Grabbed a small sample of this from a tea box. Hmm this one is pretty plain. The flavor is sort of boring, not chocolatey at all. The black tea isn’t very tasty warm, a little sourish, not rich or full enough. I had the rest cool with milk, which helped and made it taste much better, though still no chocolate. There were very few cocoa shells in this sample, so that probably impacted my experience, but this just isn’t one I’d like to seek out again.

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Grandpa style, this is pretty much a dead average black tea with a tad of chocolatey flavour and scent. The leaves are cut, though coarsely. It’s much, much better Western-style. I thought adding sugar might improve it further, as it sometimes does with chocolate-based drinks, but I think it’s actually better without; the flavours are clearer and smoother.

Flavors: Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, Oak

Boiling 3 min, 15 sec 3 g 13 OZ / 384 ML

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Nice roasty taste. The dry leaves smell quite roasted; the wet leaves smell surprisingly mild. It has a bitter aroma. The flavour is mineral and full, slightly tannic, and warming.

Despite being roasted quite darkly, the oxidation level is indeed quite low, and the tea behaves closer to green tea than red/black. Initially, I brewed it at a high temperature, as I usually do for oolong teas, and it was overly bitter. I dropped the temperature to around 80C and it improved dramatically.

Flavors: Grapes, Mineral, Roasted, Tannic

180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

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drank Himalayan Spiced Chai by Rakkasan Tea
2901 tasting notes

Homemade advent day 3

This is a very spicy chai (potent) with little actual tea. I was a bit worried drinking this late in the day (of course, I didn’t fall asleep until after 2am) but the blend really looks like it barely has any black tea in it.

I can taste all of the spices (cinnamon, clove, and peppercorn) with hints of cardamon. I can’t taste citrus or nutmeg, but this is a bit of an odd blend. I like the addition of citrus (lemongrass and orange) but I wish I could taste it. There is also a herbaceous flavour like dried bay leaf or tarragon.

Flavors: Cardamom, Cinnamon, Clove, Herbaceous, Herbs, Peppercorn, Spices, Spicy

205 °F / 96 °C 8 min or more

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Another chai from the tea box! This blend comes off as strangely a little smoky? I found it tastiest when it was freshly brewed, as opposed to the slight bitterness it’s acquired as it’s been sitting. I’m not sure what spices are in this blend. I can definitely see, but not taste, lemongrass. The flavor is strong, but not spicy. I haven’t liked it as much as some others in the box, but that may just be preference.

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‘Samurai’ Traveling Teabox – Tea #11
Somehow I haven’t tried this one from any tea shop yet.  I think it’s sourced from Bitaco and Simpson & Vail also carries it. (ALSO Simpson & Vail has a new national park collection of teas!)  This tea is as lovely as I’d expected.   It’s strictly for cocoa/ dark chocolate cravings because it is strictly dark chocolate and cocoa.  I’m not sure how much is from the cocoa shells and how much of the flavor is from the black tea itself.  But the flavor is dreamy. Two solid steeps. Not much else to say! There are some fancy teas in this teabox — thank you SkySamurai!
Steep #1  // 1 1/2 teaspoons for full mug // 18 minutes after boiling  // 2 minute steep
Steep #2  // just boiled // 4 min

Flavors: Cocoa, Dark Chocolate


Yessss, I need to get Zion in my next order for sure.


The packaging on the S&V parks teas are amazing. I especially want to try the smoky blackberry.

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‘Samurai’ Traveling Teabox – Tea #8
This was much less spicy than the chai I had the other day!  Despite being almost convinced by the lovely Uplifting Chai I had from Plum Deluxe last week, I don’t usually like lemongrass or orange peel in my chai.  But they aren’t too bad here.  I like the addition of nutmeg in this, but I’m not really tasting it.  Why cinnamon LEAVES but no cinnamon?  That’s a weird choice… The resulting flavor is sweet and mildly spicy. Wisps of citrus in the second steep.  The black tea leaves in the blend are sparse, so the brew isn’t too dark. But I NEED dark chai.
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 teaspoons for a full mug // 18 minutes after boiling // 2 1/2 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled  // 5 minute steep

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drank Shangri-la by Rakkasan Tea
799 tasting notes

Shangri-la is defined as a remote, beautiful, imaginary place. So one would assume that when using this name for a tea they are suggesting it is a beautiful tea, with beautiful flavor. Utopian tea. This unique tea, while classified as a black tea is more akin to a Darjeeling. Though all Darjeelings are currently classified under black processing they are actually processed slightly different and that is what leads to their uniqueness. The difference is in two parts of the processing stage: The wither stage, which is longer than black, and the oxidation stage, in which the leave will not be allowed to fully oxidize like black tea does. If one was trying to determine what type of tea this was simply by looking at the leaves they may find it tough going as Darjeeling leaves are greener in color then black leaves. This tea in particular has gorgeous rolled leaves of slight greens, browns, and whites. The aroma is simply, shangri-la. Pleasant and beautiful. The flavor is equivalent. Clean and refreshing with floral and slight vegetal notes. One of the main reasons this tea will probably not be considered a Darjeeling, at least for now, is because it is not grown in Darjeeling. Only a tea grown in Darjeeling can be called one.

3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp

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Jasmine in green tea is as well known as milk in coffee. And yet despite how many companies sell it not all poses the quality that Rakkasan does. Upon opening your bag you will find beautiful tea leaves; dark green. The scent of jasmine will consume your sense of smell. Enjoy it now because the smell fades as it is brewed. For the best jasmine flavor try it first at 2 minutes. Seems to me that after 4 minutes the jasmine flavor is somewhat diminished by the tannins. If you are a fan of honey in your tea this is a good one for it as it brings out more of the jasmine.

Flavors: Jasmine

2 min, 30 sec

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A very unique oolong. They say its only oxidized till 45% but the leaves look so dark! It has woodsy and floral notes mixed together but not like the orchid notes in a lightly oxidized oolong, more like a flower growing out of a cedar tree that has leeched some of the cedar notes. The wet leaves have almost a cigarette smell to them. Not quite as gross as that smell but just not the nicest wet leaf tea smell.

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