Saturday, May 10, 2014
Verdant Tea, Vanilla Citrus Spice
Yunnan black tea at its best has the most exquisite citrus and spice flavors to it. A good Dian Hong is cinnamon sweet with orange aftertaste. We decided that we would take this most beloved flavor pairing and bring out to the forefront through a satisfying blend that is beautiful hot and iced.
We start with Zhu Rong Yunnan Black, a spicy and full bodied tea with notes of sweet potato and cayenne. Next we bring out the citrus with orange peel, and draw out spice with ginger, cinnamon, and coriander. Finally, we emphasize the sweetness of the tea with generous whole vanilla bean and toasted dandelion root, creating a creamy and full bodied blend.
Zhu Rong Yunnan Black, organic orange peel, organic ginger, organic cinnamon, organic coriander, organic vanilla bean and pods, organic toasted dandelion root
It is late in the evening and I need tea. I grabbed this one thinking it was a tisane blend (meaning decaf). Oops. Looks like I may be up late tonight. It's all good as this is Zhu Rong Yunnan black, which is a wonderful Dian Hong, along with a bunch of spices and other goodies.
I took the leaf picture above and if I do say so myself, and I do, that is one good looking leaf.
I used my press and water heated to 209 F. The steep was two minutes. The brew is dark and a little cloudy from the spices. I was only supposed to steep this 45 seconds at 205 F. Of course I didn't look it up until after steeping. It didn't seem to hurt the cup any.
My first sip reminds me of spice cake. At first I don't taste tea, but as I grow accustomed to the flavors and it cools just a bit the Yunnan tea comes through gently. The main flavors though are the ginger, cinnamon, and orange peel. The vanilla seems very faint to me, adding only a slight smoothness to the cup. There is a bit of pepperiness late in the sip.
I said it before, I am not a big fan of teas that even remind of chai. That being said this is well blended and pretty tasty.