|"The leaves were the usual bouquet of green/brown/beige/tippy loveliness I come to expect from second flush Darjeelings, but there was something a bit different about this one."|
This time 'round, I had a new offering from the Arya estate. I've talked about them before at length, so I'll spare you - fair drinker - the details. Cliff's notes version: They're one of the most prominent estates in Darjeeling and produce a line of teas called "Arya's Jewels" - Emerald, Pearl, Topaz, Diamond, etc. I've had over half of 'em. This one, however, was not part of that line. That's okay, some Arya's not of the Jewel series have been pretty good. And this looked, well, jewel-worthy.
The leaves were the usual bouquet of green/brown/beige/tippy loveliness I come to expect from second flush Darjeelings, but there was something a bit different about this one. The leaves were actually lighter in color than I was used to for the summer pickings. There was more green and gold-tipping going on in the fray. That and the aroma gave me the impression of a Darjeeling oolong, rather than a standard OP. The aroma was also nuttier and more caramel-like than I was used to. It still came across as wonderful, though.
As for brewing, I went with a typical Darjeeling approach. I boiled some water, then let it stand for a minute or so. I put 2 tsps. of leaves in a 16oz. travel mug then poured water over 'em. After three minutes, I decanted.
The result was a light, coppery, red-hued liquor with a robust, rosé-like aroma. Shades of nutmeg, jaggery, cocoa, and buckwheat came through. Taste-wise, it was extremely smooth with an emphasis on the nut-sweet character on the forefront. The middle was pleasantly medium-bodied, and the trail-off was nice and poetic.
Dirty tea limerick time.
— To purchase Thunderbolt Tea Arya Moonbeam (2nd Flush 2012), 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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