Tuesday, September 25, 2012

sTEAp Shoppe, Smokey Mountain sTEAp

sTEAp Shoppe Description:
This is a smoky robust Tea is a blend of Organic Lapsang Souchong, Organic Se Chung Special Oolong, Organic Assam flowery Orange Pekoe. Each tea brings it’s own flavor profile and combined they create a smoky floral tea. With the addition of Chicory you will experience a coffee like tannins, Organic Cocoa Nibs & Organic Vanilla Bean introduce a smooth rich flavor and aroma and the Fenugreek seed helps bring all these unique flavors together as one with it’s milky sweet flavor. This tea has a muted smokey flavor yet rich and creamy with coffee undertones.

Organic Lapsang Souchong, Organic Se Chung Special Oolong, Organic Assam flowery Orange Pekoe,Chicory, Organic Cocoa Nibs, Organic Vanilla Bean, Fenugreek seed. Naturally Caffeinated

My Review:
sTEAp Shoppe offered 20 of us on Steepster the opportunity to sample their tea and participate in a live virtual tea tasting held on the forum September 23, 2012. This was an unexpected bonus tea sample for all of us.

Looking at the dry leaf you can tell it has pieces of vanilla and cocoa nibs. It also has lapsang soushong and oolong for the tea base. Interesting.

In the sip, the smoke is heavy by my standards, but it isn’t overwhelming and it never feels like someone dumped an ashtray in your cup. This is a good kind of smoky. It blends really well with the other flavors. There is a bite in the back of the throat. The smell, the bite, and the aftertaste remind me of rooibos – though this is better and more complex. A few more sips and now this reminds me of the smell of sawdust when you are running a dull circular saw through a fresh piece of pine – kind of woodsy, kind of burnt.

In cup two the smoke does not diminish, rather the oolong just comes out of hiding a little more. It gives it a nice floral note. The throat bite is not so noticeable in this cup. This is maybe even a little better than the first. If not better, at least different. Nice.

I went three cups with this one. It was lighter than the first two. Though the smoke still stands out this is a civilized cup. A pleasant ending to this tea.

One thing I noted is that if you let the cup get cold, the taste of this tea perks up even more.

It is pretty intense. Unless you are a huge smoky tea fan, I am not sure you would want it everyday. That being said, it is different than the normal fare and just happens to be really good.

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