CREATED BY: CARA MCGEE
Brash, Aggressive, and Rich. A blend at once frustrating and charming.
Based on characters owned by Marvel/Disney. This tea blend is created purely for my own enjoyment.
The scent of this tea comes out swinging. The lapsang souchong almost punches you in the face at first, but sweet strains of caramel and a heady undercurrent of chocolate float up if you continue inhaling the scent (while possibly looking like a crazy person standing round breathing tea tins, but if you are home alone, no problem.) In this particular batch, the barest hint of ginger comes through in the aroma – probably overpowered by the lapsang.
I steeped a heaping teaspoon at 212 degrees for four minutes, until it was a nice, dark amber color. In the cup, the ginger finally comes through, offering a mellowed sharpness even as the smokiness of the lapsang decreases. As before, I tried this tea without any frills added; a nice, bare-bones introduction to the flavors. Honestly, lapsang can be a little too aggressive at times, particularly if one is not in the mood for a strong tea. However, this blend benefits from the richness of the chocolate and caramel; they supply a smoothness to the smoky intensity of the lapsang and open the door to the subtlest after-bite of ginger, a near-tingling vibrancy left in the mouth after a cup.
The cooler the cup becomes, the more the scent of caramel rises. Fortunately, this blend does not suffer from becoming bitter when cold (I have had problems lately with finishing a cup while it is still hot when I am working and/or writing.) In fact, the additional time in the cup seems to give the blend greater opportunity for the flavors to mesh, and they really complement each other while proclaiming their individuality; a pleasant heaviness threading through and tying all the flavors together long after the cup is drained.
I give this tea 4 out of 5 stars. At first, I was hovering around a 3/3.5 score, but knew part of the low initial impression was because I was unsure how to interpret the subtly deeper complexity of this blend. I tried additional cups and knew it deserved a higher score.
You can purchase it here.