Storm Watcher

Picture of Storm Watcher
Brand:Murchie's Tea & Coffee Ltd
Style:Black Tea
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Region:Blend
Loose/teabag:Loose
Product page:Storm Watcher

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Reviewer pic81 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
(260 reviews) on

Being in Oklahoma, the name of this seasonal tea intrigued me a lot, even though the storms inspiring it are cold, wet wintertime blasts on the British Columbia coast, instead of southern Plains severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. Then again, that makes sense. What would tornado tea be, and would it even matter? The last sip you have before, as Carrie Underwood sang, "every brick, every board, every slammin' door blown away"? Pacific Northwest winter-storm tea, as advertised, instead evokes an image of sitting inside the log cabin by the sea cliffs, in the flickering lights of candles, oil lamps and fireplace. Sip a steaming brew while wrapped in a blanket, as beams creak from the rain-filled gusts of wind howling through the high Sitka spruces outside.

Does this tea live up to the rustic image? It's far from the only rich, mellow, warming blend of tea that could be employed for such a setting, but yeah...it will work, and work reasonably well. The dry aroma is pleasant and richer than many black-tea loose blends: woodsy, earthy, malty, with enough smokiness that I was a little concerned about how it would taste (I'm not a fan of very smoky-tasting teas). The dry leaves are a mix of mostly fat or wiry black leaves with golden tips. I know Murchie's photos sometimes don't do justice to the teas, as webmaster Alex has noted elsewhere, but theirs seems representative of my batch: about 10–20% tippy golden, the rest dark, with an isolated green leaf.

Fortunately for me, the flavor was much less smoky, not enough to distract. Still, the brew has a warming quality, also woodsy, very faintly peppery, while rich and a bit malty (Assam component?). Despite being a moderately robust tea, it's quite smooth—not overly bitter, astringent nor sharp. This tea takes sweetening very nicely, and I reckon it would mate well with warm milk, for those who do that. It finishes clean and doesn't leave much aftertaste, either. Despite what should be a decent caffeine content with the tips it has, Storm Watcher lives up to billing as a mellow, relaxing tea.
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