Review: ITFA T.T.E.S. No. 18 Ruby Black Tea

Assam Tea, Black Tea, International Tea Farms Alliance Add comments
Shaiha’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"I am not a steadfast Assam drinker but that would quickly change if I always had access to this tea. One of the best I have ever tried."
Shaiha’s Teaview: 9.5/10
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ITFA (International Tea Farms Alliance) does a great thing in connecting tea drinkers to the smaller tea farms that produce some of the best teas. These are teas that we wouldn't ordinarily have access to as they don't produce enough to make it into the stock of most tea vendors. They do this by having a Global Tea Taster's Club that sends out teas from a different country every two months. This shipment is all about Taiwanese teas.

My tea today is from a small farm, Yuan Shiang, that has been specializing in Assam teas for the past 30 years. My sample consists of fairly large black tea leaves that are a deep black in color with a minty, malty aroma. I set up my Breville using 2 tablespoons of leaves for 5 cups of water. I set the brew temp at 212 degrees and a steep time of 3 minutes.

The liquor on this tea is a rich dark reddish brown. The minty aroma has faded and is now all about the maltiness. This is a very smooth Assam that has a heavier mouthfeel. It starts out with a hint of sharpness that quickly fades away to a very rounded taste. This is a bit of malt to hit as well as hints of mint, cocoa and tobacco. The mint really makes itself known in a lingering aftertaste. Very refreshing.

I am not a steadfast Assam drinker but that would quickly change if I always had access to this tea. One of the best I have ever tried. It is stout enough to support cream and sugar but smooth enough that it is not needed.

— To purchase ITFA T.T.E.S. No. 18 Ruby Black Tea, 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: Shaiha Shaiha
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