|"Enchanting and luxurious. "|
Naturally, I was enchanted by the sight of these pitch-black leaves that reflected only the slightest hint of brown. They reminded me of a sultry actress like Natalie Portman or Catherine Zeta-Jones wearing a mink. (Not that they would. Portman, especially, is against that sort of thing.)
The aroma of this tea, also known as "Sun Moon Lake", was seductive as well, like an exotic, vanilla and passion fruit perfume or essence.
The flavor had a slight menthol tendency, which is characteristic of Ruby Red Teas. Compared to other Ruby Red's I have tasted, I was happy to note that Beautiful's version was much LESS menthol-like. The down-played coolness allowed more complexity to shine through. It was a tiny bit tangy, but finished malty and robust, like an Assam.
The longer I brewed these leaves, the more I liked the result. Beautiful's website encourages "playing around" with the brewing times. Milder tea fans are sure to enjoy a weaker version, but I steeped about a teaspoon of leaves in a cup of boiling water for about five minutes. I never "rinse" the leaves, although Beautiful and other tea professionals recommend doing so. (Pour the boiling water on the leaves, then immediately dump it out.)
This tea provided several infusions, which added to its value and its allure. It had all the luxury of a fur coat, and no animals were harmed. I rate it a 10.
— To purchase Beautiful Taiwan Tea Company Ruby Red 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.
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