oooh darjeeling! ooooh oolong! Oh me, oh my… where does the time go? It’s been forever since my last post, and I am itching to get back to it. I finally have a 3-day weekend all to myself, with no obligations to anyone. What a luxury!
So, let’s just get this out there… things are looking up in Polly’s world. I’m done with my awful job, and my apartment is starting to look like a home instead of a rummage sale. I’ve started school (as a student this time!), and I’m getting back into my healthy eating and exercise program. I’m starting to see sprinkles of hope scattered along the horizon, and that is something I haven’t felt in a very long time. So, in this optimistic frame of mind, let’s have tea!
When I think “Darjeeling”, I always think of black tea, so this ‘ooooh darjeeling‘ from adagio teas is a little surprising, and very intriguing. I don’t know what to expect. I love it when a tea completely surprises me!
I open the packet to find fuzzy white, green, and brown broken leaves that smell like bread, dry hay, and sweet raisins. It reminds me of raisin bread, which takes me back to my Grandma’s kitchen when I was a kid. She used to make it for me. It smelled so good!
I steep 2 tsp of tea in boiling water for… oops! 2 minutes! A bit longer than I normally would… hope it’s not gone bitter! The tea is a beautiful golden brown/rusty red colour. The first sip is dark, earthy, metallic, fruity, floral, and too bitter. I should have dialled it back by a minute. I can taste the rich raisin flavour, and there is a surprising and intriguing floral aftertaste, but it lacks the sweetness I wanted. As I drink the cup, the floral taste becomes more pronounced. I do really like that, and I wish I could name the flower. I think this would be a really beautiful and complex oolong if I could steep it without the bitterness. It obviously needs a little more TLC than I gave it. I’ll try to get it right in the next cup.
I steep a second cup for just a minute and a half. This one is a much lighter golden brown colour and the flavour is completely different! This cup is much milder, with an almost caramelized raisin and apricot flavour. There are hints of bread and yeast, but the lovely floral notes are almost imperceptible. There is still a wee hint of bitterness and a touch of astringency. I’ve just checked the adagio website which compares the flavour to an ‘Oriental Beauty’, however, I’m finding this to be not as sweet and delicate as the ‘Oriental Beauty‘ teas that I’ve tasted. Perhaps it could be, if I steep it correctly from the start, but I will have to try this on another day to see if I can get it right. There are some really good complex and layered flavours here, and I want to taste them without the bitterness. Next time, I think I will use less tea and steep it in 30 second increments, as I usually do. I was careless today. I’ll update the post if I can get it right.
Big Big Big THANK YOU to adagio teas for providing this tea to me free of charge.