Monday, June 13, 2016
Totem Tea, Ruby 18 Taiwanese Black
As delicious as it is beautiful, this striking tea is unlike any other black tea. There are immediate and powerful dark fruit-pit notes alongside a wintergreen-like expression, which is quite striking and unique. The dark red quality of this tea seems to go beyond just the rich ruby color.
Taiwan is world renowned for its oolong tea but little is known of its phenomenal Black tea which is often referred to as Sun Moon Lake Black tea due to the location of its growth and production. This black tea is as unique and special as the oolong produced on the special island.
Sample provided by Totem Tea
Sun Moon Lake Black Tea. It says so right in the description above. Need I say more? Just in case you didn't get the memo, I will go ahead with the review. Oh, the sacrifices I make for my readers.
I opened up the sample packet and sniffed, just as I always do before looking at the leaf, and first caught dried field grass and a touch of malt. Then I detected fruit. At first I was thinking grape? Then changed my mind to cherry. The later seems to fit the company description better as well. Either way, it definitely has fruit notes.
The leaf as you can see above is very dark, long, and lightly twisted. This is the only situation where you will ever catch me favorably comparing anything to spiders, but the leaf has that tarantula leg feel about it. I am not afraid. Just by observing the leaf you can feel that this is quality tea.
The cup is actually a little darker than it looks on my computer screen. It is sort of bronze in color with ruby highlights.
This tastes so good. I wish you were here to share a cup. It is honey and plums? Maybe my first instinct of grapes wasn't so far off. Caramel and cocoa notes are in here as well. Then it finishes with this sensation of mint. Not the taste, the sensation. And not the harsher spearmint type either. This is a very comforting and welcome cooling like from winter mint.
I have to admit, as soon as I saw Ruby 18 Taiwanese Black, I was pretty certain I was going to love this tea. I am not disappointed. In fact I am a bit elated. It has been a while since my last Sun Moon Lake cup and I don't recall any of them having the cooling (and lingering) aftertaste. Possibly they did and I have forgotten.
If you love a soothing black tea, this one comes highly recommended.
You can find Totem Tea Ruby 18 Taiwanese Tea here