I felt like having an Assam so I went and riffled through my pile of Teabox Assams. They mostly have very similar descriptions, but this one jumped out at me, because on the package it says, “produces a liquor with a crystal lemon like colour”, which sounded very intriguing and very different.
The dry leaf is small, dark and twisty, with a few tips. It smells like malt and baked bread. I steeped 1tsp in 93C water for 3 minutes, though the package recommends 5.
Well, unless “crystal lemon like colour” means something totally different to whomever wrote that description, I have no idea what they’re going on about. The liquor is a dark, reddish brown. Not quite coffee coloured, but closer to that than any lemon I’ve ever seen.
The liquor smells sweet and slightly fruity, like stewed prunes, with a hint of grain. The flavour is sweet and malty, with a touch of bitterness and very mild astringency. There’s not quite as much of a full mouth flavour as I was expecting, but I’m also hesitant to steep it longer and bring out more of the bitter and astringent notes. A bit of a fruity note at the tail of the sip, and then a finish that’s grain and makes me think of milk.
Toward the bottom half of my cup, as it cools, I’m also getting a hint of cardamom, but I’m going to chalk that up to imperfect cleaning of my steeping basket.
A pleasant but not exceptional Assam.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Bitter, Fruity, Grain, Malt, Stewed Fruits, Sweet