Review: Thunderbolt Tea Puttabong SFTGFOP1 2009

Darjeeling Tea, Thunderbolt Tea Add comments
Dan’s Teaview Snapshot
Its OK"Floral abundance comes screaming through - although bitterness and astringency are slight in comparison (but definitely present). The floral notes are what is ultimately powerful here, which is a whole different ballgame from bitterness."
Dan’s Teaview: 6/10
Other Teaviews: Vanessa gave it 5.5/10, Jamie gave it 8.5/10, Katie gave it 8.4/10
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thunderboltputtabongThunderbolt Tea offers a wide array of Darjeeling teas of apparent top quality. They are currently offering first, second, and autumn flush teas from 2009 as well as 2008 (they appear to be all sold out of 2007 vintages). For any fans of first flush Darjeeling tea, I would suggest proceeding with your 2009 purchases post-haste, as the first flush season reportedly experienced an early severe drought, and has left limited production available. The quality has not suffered, however.

The dried leaves have a chocolaty, cocoa, and slight spice nose to them. The mix here is varied: mid-sized leaves tightly rolled, broken leaves and bits (unrolled), powdery dust and remnants. The gamut of tea hues are here as well - autumn red pieces mixed with bright greens and darker evergreens - even a peppering of smaller whites and browns as well.

A near-boiling brew (a wait of approximately 60 seconds after full boil) at 3 to 3.5 minutes is what yields the most satisfying cup. A shorter blend tends to be a tad too watery, in my opinion. The cup is pale and slight, but the flavor is bold indeed. Floral abundance comes screaming through - although bitterness and astringency are slight in comparison (but definitely present). The floral notes are what is ultimately powerful here, which is a whole different ballgame from bitterness. The initial lingering on the middle tongue is buttery, then giving way to that floral power around the edges.

It has taken me some time to warm up to true first flush Darjeelings - much in the same manner as with India Pale Ales, which I used to abhor, but now have grown accustomed to (and fond of) high quality IPAs. Much in the same, a nice quality first flush Darjeeling is an acquired taste, and from that point forward there is much to explore.

— To purchase Thunderbolt Tea Puttabong SFTGFOP1 2009, 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.

Teaviews Member: Dan Dan
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