I went through the better part of a pound of this stuff! What can I say, I’m often powerless to resist the siren call of a good deal on Amazon. Ahem. Anyway, I was happy to drink this tea up. I drank so much of this last winter and fall – because it’s a rooibos blend, it’s a great go-to drink on a chilly night. Even though it’s very warm and summery now, I’m sipping on one of my last cups – I’m down to just a few more servings. I often drink this tea straight, though now and again I will add a splash of creamer (preferably almond-coconut milk) and/or brown sugar.
Drunk by itself, Fireside Chai is really autumnal, making me think more of mulling spices than an Indian market. The cinnamon and clove pop out first on the palate, along with a suprisingly prominent orange note! The orange peel plays well with the smooth, slightly sweet rooibos holding the tea together. Ginger and cardamom are just present enough to keep this thing tasting like my notion of a masala chai, but the real kick here is provided by black pepper. The longer you steep, the more intense all the flavors get, but especially the pepper! Honestly I prefer my chai to be heavier on the cardamom, so I won’t be replenishing my huge stock of this tea once I sip the last of this. However, this is a very good bet if you want a caffeine-free or rooibos-centered chai and would appreciate an orange-fruity and spicy black pepper bent!