Review of Darjeeling (Loose)

8 of 105 of 55 of 588 of 100

This seemingly straightforward Darjeeling has quickly become one of my favorite everyday teas. Although "typical" in many respects, it is surprisingly complex...the aroma has many different aspects to it: a fruitiness, a hint of a rice-like quality, some floral tones, a bit of spice, a suggestion of fall leaves, and some fresh herbaceous tones as well.

The leaf is highly heterogeneous in color, mostly dark brown and tan, but with significant amounts of light olive-green and silvery bits. Perhaps this explains the diversity of qualities in the aroma: it's like this tea combines aspects of black, white, green, and oolong teas.

The flavor is smooth and clean; this tea is light but still has a bit of body to it.

I've experimented with different amounts of leaf and different brewing times. This tea is very versatile. You can steep it for five minutes and it gains considerable strength and a bit more bite, but without acquiring any unpleasant qualities at all--virtually no astringency.

The price on this tea is exceptionally low relative to the quality and the fact that it is both organic and fair trade. How in the world do they do it? This is a top-notch tea. I would recommend it to anyone who can get their hands on it; it's not super widely-available in the U.S. but you can find it in some stores.

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