This was a tea I had been looking forward to reviewing since I bought it. I am a big fan of some of the black and oolong teas produced by Jun Chiyabari, and though I was not familiar with this tea until today, I had heard nothing but good things about it. Well, I am happy to report that I found this to be a very fine black tea.
I prepared this tea two ways. For the first part of the session, I steeped 3 grams of loose tea leaves in approximately 8 ounces of 203 F water for 5 minutes. I then conducted a second infusion at 7 minutes. For the remainder of the session, I relied on my usual single infusion (3-4 grams of loose tea leaves in approximately 8 ounces of 203 F water for 5 minutes).
Prior to infusion, the dry tea leaves produced aromas of chocolate, citrus, wood, and malt. After infusion, I began to detect hints of butter, brown toast, black grape, roasted grain, and cream. In the mouth, I detected rich notes of wood, chocolate, roasted grain, orange peel, lemon zest, butter, brown toast, cream, malt, and roasted almond supported by delicate undertones of brown sugar, nutmeg, and black grape. The finish was woody and malty with notes of citrus, chocolate, and roasted grain providing support.
This was a nice black tea. I was especially impressed by the fact that it did not come off as a clone of any sort of Darjeeling. The chocolate notes were particularly impressive in this one. I would definitely recommend it to fans of traditional black teas who are looking for something unique.
Flavors: Almond, Brown Sugar, Brown Toast, Butter, Chocolate, Cream, Grain, Grapes, Lemon, Malt, Nutmeg, Orange, Wood