People, have you ever bought a tea that you are pretty certain you’ll dislike simply for the hell of it? That’s what I did here. In all honesty, I cannot stand turmeric. It is literally one of my least favorite things. I bought this tea basically because I had already purchased the India Nilgiri First Flush Black Tea and India Nilgiri First Flush Green Tea. This was the only other Nilgiri offering in stock at the time, and I had a little more money to spend, so I just said “screw it” and purchased it too. It was literally nothing more than an impulse buy. Upon deciding to work my way through my pouch of this tea, I was kind of hoping it would change my mind about turmeric, but alas, it did not. My hatred of turmeric remained strong throughout my time with this tea and still burns brightly as of the present. Fortunately, the black tea base was nice and went a long way toward balancing out the infernal, vile turmeric.
I prepared this tea gongfu style (not recommended). After the rinse, I steeped 6 grams of the loose tea leaf and turmeric blend in 4 ounces of 197 F water for 5 seconds. This infusion was chased by 18 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 7 seconds, 9 seconds, 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes, 10 minutes, and 15 minutes. I stopped at the 15 minute mark simply because I had to throw in the towel. The tea base seemed pretty much spent, but that damned tumeric just wouldn’t die!
Prior to the rinse, the dry tea and turmeric blend emitted powerful aromas of, well, turmeric. There were some earthy and smoky scents too, but really, it was mostly just turmeric. After the rinse, I noted more turmeric and a little more smoke and earth with some subtle aromas of wood, brown sugar, and apple. I did not pick up any new aromas on the first infusion. In the mouth, the tea liquor offered notes of turmeric, earth, smoke, pine, brown sugar, cream and butter that were backed by hints of tomato and apple. The subsequent infusions brought out subtle grassy scents with some aromas reminiscent of chili leaf, green bell pepper, toast, oats, and malt. Subtle green bell pepper and grass notes came out in the mouth alongside impressions of minerals, chili leaf, blueberry, oats, toast, and malt. As the tea faded, the liquor emphasized mineral, earth, turmeric, chili leaf, and green bell pepper notes that were balanced by subtle, belatedly emerging orange zest notes and hints of oats, malt, cream, and toast.
Well, this ended up being about what I expected it to be, which is to say that it most certainly was not for me. I’m sorry, but the turmeric was just too much for me, and I could not consistently convince myself to overlook it and focus on what the tea base had to offer. That was a shame too, considering that the black tea used in this blend displayed some really nice fruity and vegetal notes. I’ve yet to try it, but I’m willing to bet that it would shine on its own. Fortunately, I have some and plan on reviewing it prior to the end of the month. Overall, this was not the worst thing ever; it just wasn’t for me. People who are into turmeric will very likely dig it. As for myself, I’m glad I got this one out of the way. I also doubt that I will be reviewing many more blends like this in the future.
Flavors: Apple, Blueberry, Brown Sugar, Butter, Cream, Earth, Grass, Green Bell Peppers, Malt, Mineral, Oats, Orange Zest, Pine, Smoke, Spicy, Toast, Vegetal