Review: KTeas Black Tea with Black Currant

Black Currant Tea, Black Tea, KTeas Add comments
Raven’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"The deliciously scented light to medium bodied brew offers a juicy, pleasing black currant flavour with a little sweetness to it yet the black tea base seems to subdue the lighter currant notes, grounding them with its more rugged, earthy character"
Raven’s Teaview: 7.2/10
Other Teaviews: Vanessa gave it 7/10, Troy gave it 6/10
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kteasblackcurrantOne of the best parts of spring is the surprise. From the flat mud, magically one morning you notice a burst of red blooms or a bright green growing bud. It's just the kind of cheer to start your day right. When I used to go camping up north as a tot, venturing into the woods near our site was a natural romp for us kids. Perhaps to scare off the bears we'd imagine that night or to see what trouble we could get in. Yet, one of the best moments was serendipitously spotting some bright spot of rubied colour amidst the greens. Berries! As kids, we'd be giddy to eat ourselves to gluttony for discovering wild berries seemed better than a pirate's booty and ever so special from the pure surprise like a present from the forest. I don't think I've ever had black currants aside from the treasures we discovered and apart from that, I've only ever encountered them in my grandmother's jam as she was a forager herself. So black currants have a wildness and a fondness for me. Thus, with such affections, I am easily enticed by the mention of a Black currant tea that seems as serendipitous a find as the berries themselves. The combination of black currants' wildness with Indian black tea's stoicism in Kteas Black Currant Black tea seemed quite an attractive pair and I didn't have to drive six hours north to find it.
Yet the leaves still kind of nod to my forest forays with the waves of small dark cut black tea leaves tossed with small celadon green pieces of red currant leaves. Tumbling through the mix, a dried purplish black plump black currant peeks through along with the occasional small thick burgundy brown twig as if freshly plucked from a trail. The contrast between the red currant leaves and black tea does add a nice accent although I almost would have preferred that no black currants were added to there being so few as I only found two in my sample. The tea also includes natural flavours which aren't seen but reveal themselves in the delicious medium scent of the leaves that seems to burst with berry goodness. What is even more impressive is that the leaves smell like black currant, with a soft dark berry zeal that is closer to blueberry or blackberry and it definitely isn't strawberry. The fragrance holds more of a cooked berry sweetness, more perfume-like than fresh or dried berry nuances while little surfaces from the black tea, thus it seems to be hiding in the woods.
Without any need for comfortable shoes or a fierce walking stick to prod through the bushes, the trail to this infusion is easily found through boiling water with 3 grams of leaves for 2 to 2.5 minutes, as mapped out by the Kteas website (https://www.kteasonline.com/product/190). At the end is a beautiful brew, gleaming with dark mahogany tones and a medium fragrance. Now the lively black currant aroma tantalizes with a twist of fruity tang, forested by the grainy scents of the black tea. Both elements of the fragrance seem distinct as the horizon's division of land with air, rather than melding into a harmonious scene.
Ripe for the plucking, the first sip opens into black currants, buoyant with a splash of tang to punctuate the fruitiness. Delving further into the cup, the light to medium bodied brew offers a juicy, pleasing black currant flavour with a little sweetness to it yet the black tea profile is rougher tasting. Rather than accentuate the dark pigmented fruitiness of the black currant as I thought a black tea combination might, here the black tea base seems to subdue the lighter currant notes, grounding them with its more rugged, earthy character. Mineral and raw spelt trace out the black tea's gritty terrain in the background but the delicious black currant flavour really demands all one's attention. The black tea flavour isn't too strong to outshine the black currant, while it also contributes some bitterness and a touch of dryness that gives the tea some edge in each sip. The relatively quick finish leaves one pining for more from the lovely light raisiny, dried black currant left to linger amidst a slightly coppery aftertaste.
Taking the leaves along another path with a second steeping also yields an equally fetching now orange brown cup, led by light to medium cooked black currant, blueberry aromas. This trail continues to entertain with its fresh zing as more of the mineral, dry leaves and hard wheat flavours of the black tea emerge. Yet there is still only a shade of astringency and dryness to the cup. A third infusion also offers good colour with a faint scent that is marked mostly by the weaker dry grains of the base except for a light but lovely currant fruitiness in the aftertaste.
The tea also keeps up a tasty fruitiness upon cooling to make a wonderful iced tea. Cooling seems to subdue the mineral notes of the black tea base letting the black currant shine. In order to keep the astringency in check, I found it worthwhile to mind the brewing time closely. Thus, if using a higher ratio of the dry leaves for a fanciful iced tea, it might be better to keep the brewing time to two minutes or to experiment with a cup before heading to a pitcher.
Kteas black currant black tea seems a true ode to the wildness of the black currant with its mix of fruity zip with earthy appeal that would arm one well for their own outdoor adventure, whether it be a hike or hunting for a parking space.

— To purchase KTeas Black Tea with Black Currant, 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: Raven Raven
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