My thoughtful and caring wife brought this tea back for me after her business trip to Washington, D.C. It was even NICER of her to do it when you consider how much she HATES the smell and taste of smoky teas.
Personally, I LOVE smoky teas- when they are produced correctly. They shouldn’t be overpowering to the point that you feel like you fell into a campfire. And, they shouldn’t be so weak that you feel like you need to rub two sticks together to create your own campfire effect.
This tea came in a black metal tin similar to the containers that package Harney & Sons teas. Whether that was done on purpose or not, it did give me the impression that I was about to partake in some classy tea.
When I removed the lid for the first time, a wonderful and potent smoky aroma filled the room (much to my wife’s nausea). To me, the smell was blissful. It was like the inside of a smokehouse where rows and rows of fine pork hang as they wait to become barbecue.
I followed the container’s brewing instructions for black tea and steeped the black leaves for three minutes at 195 degrees. Both the time and temperature seemed a little light-weight to me but I always give the manufacturer the benefit of the doubt…on the first steeping.
The steeped aroma was also delightful, conjuring memories of the great campfires I sat around while a Boy Scout. At the other extreme, my wife had to leave the room at this point, her nausea too much for her to endure. The brewed hue was dark like maple syrup.
From the first sip to the bottom of two cups, this tea was just a joy to drink. The smokiness in the flavor was at the perfect pitch. Powerful and booming, but extremely pleasant. In spite of the mighty presence of the smoky taste, it was also smooth with no astringency to be found.
My wife clearly showed me that this isn’t everyone’s cup of tea (sorry, I couldn’t help myself). However, if you find smoky teas as delicious as I do, you will love this one. I HIGHLY recommend it!
Flavors: Smoke, Smoked