Review: SpecialTeas Balasun FTGFOP1 First Flush (No. 116)

Black Tea, Darjeeling Tea, SpecialTeas Add comments
James’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"Robust, heavy, and full-bodied with a smooth finish... not quite as malty as other Darjeelings. I very much enjoyed this one."
James’s Teaview: 7/10
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specialteas-balasun.jpg SpecialTeas is well named. They have a wide assortment of teas and make it very convenient to sample. I recently ordered about a dozen to try and included this single estate Darjeeling in the mix. Darjeeling ...œ known as the Champagne of Teas ...œ is one of those teas that everyone has to try at some point, along with Earl Gray. It certainly has a distinctive flavor and I assume a little more care generally goes into processing the leaves because of the reputation. I love black tea and have been anxious to try various Darjeelings and Earl Grays.

The leaves have a unique bouquet. That is really the only was to describe it. Not unique among Darjeelings, but rather unique to Darjeelings. It does not have the smell of a traditional black tea, an Oolong, or a green tea, but rather a hint of each ...œ as if it were its own class. Darjeelings are often processed slightly less than other black teas, making them closer to an Oolong. With this one, there is a hint of green tea in the mix, almost like an Oolong ...œ Green mix. The aroma of the brewed cup however is that of a black tea. It reminds me a little of an Earl Gray: Black tea with a hint of something else.

The taste is that of a strong black tea. Robust, heavy, and full-bodied, the normal astringent taste is noticeable in the middle of the sip, but almost completely subdued at the end, giving it a very smooth finish. This is only the second Darjeeling I have tried, but clearly the superior of the two. Only slightly malty, this Darjeeling would appeal to anyone who drinks traditional black tea.

— To purchase SpecialTeas Balasun FTGFOP1 First Flush (No. 116), or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

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