Smells amazing in dry leaf. Not sure I taste the black pepper very strongly. I get the cinnamon, cardamom, ginger and vanilla unsweetened but they really pop after adding a bit of sweetener. This seems somewhat weighted towards cinnamon since there are cinnamon chips as well as cinnamon listed in the ingredients. Without milk, I get a huge hit of cinnamon and cloves. Something in here makes my tongue a tiny bit numb as I get to my second cup – hm… pepper maybe? There are a LOT of spices, but the vanilla does mellow them somewhat and the tea base seems suited to carry them.
I didn’t steep this with 2/3 milk to 1/3 water this time. I just added a splash of milk after steeping in water (Tea Club had a pretty heavy lunch outing today and most of us didn’t feel the need for more in the afternoon).
This is very rich. I think it might make my tummy hurt a bit if I did it with my normal ratio.