Tea: Southern Malt
Reviewer: Alex Zorach
✓ 1274 teas reviewed
✓ 38 of Ceylon Black Tea
✓ 13 of teakruthi
✓ 5 from Matara, Sri Lanka
Review of Southern Malt
January 9th, 2017
The first tea I tried from Teakruthi was excellent and enjoyable, but didn't wow me. This one immediately stood out, from before the first sip, or even just smelling the brewed cup.
The dry leaf has a smell that strongly suggests a savory stew. It's malty with a hint of smoke and spice.
When brewed, wow. This tea is extraordinary. It's a lot more like an Assam than any other Ceylon I've tried. The brewed cup is thick and dark, with a strong malty aroma but also notes of honey and smoke. The aroma has an ethereal quality with floral notes emerging then vanishing, but the tea has a depth and body unusual among teas with such floral notes and smoothness. There's a very pleasant edginess. The flavor is smooth and mild and surprisingly sweet. The smoothness allows it to be brewed more strongly, if you want that, but it tastes plenty strong using just a teaspoon of leaf and a 3-minute steep.
I also love how I feel after drinking this. It's very warming but milder and easier to drink than most Assam and Yunnan teas that are similarly potent and warming. An excellent tea for cold days in winter.
The second cup is just as satisfying as the first. It is full-bodied, not quite as aromatic, but pleasant. I also found that I was able to get three steeps out of this tea, although the third was a bit thin. I think I ideally preferred using two steeps, the first 4-5 minutes, the second very long. Alternatively, you could use more leaf and easily get 3 briefer steeps.
This is a pricey tea but I thought it was exceptional and worth it for a splurge, especially since it resteeps unusually well for a black tea.