|"This tea is a show-stopper... whoever devised this blend deserves a big raise, or at least an "employee of the month" award."|
Based on appearances, the tea's name, Black & Blue, is actually a bit misleading. The tea blend contains not only black tea and bits of dried blueberries, but also small pieces of orange rinds, what appears to be some small green tea leaves, and some other small yet colorful bits of fruit and berries. Unfortunately, Serendipitea isn't giving away their secret, and only lists the ingredients as "Black Tea, Blueberry Fruit Blend". Even though there are other fruit pieces added to this blend, they play a very minor background role and allow the blueberry to steal the show. After brewing, the tea is a dark honey-colored (which is pretty light, relatively speaking, for black teas). The steeped leaves carried a wonderful aroma of the blueberries, but this scent was hard to pick up in the tea itself once the leaves were strained. Even though the scent was light on blueberries, the flavor maintained a berry intensity that any blueberry lover will applaud.
One very minor drawback about this tea was the slightly acidic aftertaste, which is probably a consequence of the addition of blueberries to the blend (since the acidic sensation in the aftertaste of this tea is very comparable to the sensation one often gets when eating blueberries). When compared to the truly delicious flavor of the tea, the aftertaste did little to deter me from nearly inhaling my first cup in less than 2 minutes.
This tea is a show-stopper and the Serendipitea employee that devised this blend deserve a big raise, or at least an "employee of the month" award. There is no doubt that I will be ordering this tea for myself, perhaps as soon as I am done writing this review. This tea is just a little on the pricy side ($12.50 for a 4 oz. box), but in my opinion is well worth it. It is also worth mentioning that this tea is "fair trade" tea, which Serendipitea describes to mean that " The garden where the tea is grown meets specific standards for the wages, living situation, & working conditions of its pickers" and "For every tea purchase, a Fair Trade premium goes directly back to the tea workers themselves. A committee, elected by the workers, decides how these funds will be used to meet the community's most serious needs. Tea workers have used Fair Trade premiums to hire school teachers, build maternal health clinics, & bring electricity to their villages, among other projects". This tea is a win-win situation for both the drinker and the grower. Kudos to Serendipitea for offering such a fantastic product!
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