Another example of having a few cups of this before actually bothering to log this. The dry leaf doesn’t smell nearly as smoky as I expected. I can’t really even detect any smoke, actually. This smells sweet and spicy more than anything, like candied ginger mixed with some cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla. I would have even expected there to be some licorice in here based on its sweetness in the pouch, but there isn’t.
In terms of flavour, the black pepper comes through. The ginger and cinnamon are the main spices in this, with a touch of nutmeg, which is faint. I can’t get any cardamom or clove, unfortunately, and those are my two favourite spices (ok, and star anise too). The vanilla is present, for sure. Can’t taste the honeybush in here, and rather taste a slightly tannic black tea base, with the mildest whisper of smoke. I normally detest any smoke in tea, even the slightest bit, but it’s not bad since it seems to blend effortlessly into the spices.