|"The tea itself was a deep copper, no bronze, probably due to higher temp water. Taste-wise, it had a very bitter forefront, but relaxed to something more akin to an Assam; a full-bodied black tea with comlex characteristics."|
However, the beauty of Teatulia is they have a bagged option. While teabags are a subject of derision - and on the Internet, Freudian innuendo - they do come in handy when on the go. I whipped this black tea out at the oddest of times...at an expensive sushi restaurant...during a birthday party. I didn't want their "house green tea", for I knew I would be limited to sencha or kukicha. They were even less formal than that. I took a whiff of my friend - the birthday boy's - green tea and knew right off the bat that it was genmaicha. Some like it. I don't. Unless it's blended with matcha.
I asked the waitress for "just" hot water.
Out of my shirt pocket, I gingerly removed the pyramid sachet and dunked it in my water. It brewed up beautifully to a copper-bronze infusion. The waitress looked at me funny. This was not the pale green rice-muck they passed off as tea. The light, spicy scent was also a sign of my liquid guilt. To add to her further ire, I was able to steep the netted pyramid at least three or four more times. Toward the end it got a little bitter, but not much. This black tea sated me well amidst the faux-Japanese franchise.
With the second attempt, I gave it a somewhat more formal treatment. Well, as much as I could at work anyway; Styrofoam cup and coffee-spigot water. However, I was able to at least cover the water for five minutes to let it infuse more propery. I also got a better whiff of the contents within the sachet this time. The aroma was slightly floral, but nothing to brag about. The true jewel was the taste. I wondered if my second go-around with this would live up to the sushi faux pas first.
The CTC-style leaves in the sachet went to work immediately at darkening the water. Liquid turned to liquor in a matter of seconds. The scent was quite malty, but with the same spicy finish I remembered the last time. The tea itself was a deep copper, no bronze, probably due to higher temp water. Taste-wise, it had a very bitter forefront, but relaxed to something more akin to an Assam; a full-bodied black tea with complex characteristics. I would have to confess I liked it better at lighter-temp water - like for oolongs, high-alt. Ceylons, and Darjeelings - rather than the scalding rolling-boil. The flavor was more nuanced.
Overall, though, a very good cup o' black.
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