Review: Darjeeling Tea Boutique Avongrove 2012 First Flush Supreme

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Katie’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"Entirely unique from other teas I've tried."
Katie’s Teaview: 9.2/10
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darjeelingboutiquelogoThis is my first flush tea from Avongrove, and I hope it isn't my last because it has been a delightful experience. Before I even get to steeping, I spend several minutes inhaling the fragrance of the leaves. They smell entirely unique, like citrus and Italian herbs - perhaps oregano? After steeping 1.5 teaspoons at 180° for three minutes, I get a cup that smells, thankfully, similar to the dry leaves. It's got hits of citrus, oregano, hay, and herbs.

The flavour matches the scent brilliantly. Hay, herbs, and citrus dance on the palate in perfect harmony. The citrus provides a balancing acidity without adding any astringency. It's entirely unique and entirely delicious.

I planned to steep my second infusion for 5 minutes, but accidentally left it for closer to eight. It still has a brilliant scent and a fantastic flavour. It's more strongly herbal and has picked on a touch of earthiness, but despite the oversteep, there's no bitterness or astringency. It has a wonderful herbally finish and a hint of creaminess.

There is a minor problem to acquiring this tea, however. The company is located in India, so shipping is either very expensive or very slow, and freshness makes a big difference in flush Darjeelings. The upside, of course, is that it's straight from India. It may take a month to get to you, but at least you know it hasn't been poorly stored on some shelf somewhere for years at a time.

But, despite some downsides, it's worth it. The cup is refreshing and reminds one of springtime, despite it being so cold outside. And rather than having just one note that sets it apart, the cup is entirely unique from other teas I've tried, Darjeeling or otherwise. A definite must-buy, inconvenience or not.

— To purchase Darjeeling Tea Boutique Avongrove 2012 First Flush Supreme, 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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