I wanted to start by thanking Yatra Tea Company for the amazing opportunity to try all of these great teas. They specialize in South Asian teas, predominantly from India but also from Nepal.
f you would like to try some of their teas, they have a great offer called the “Yatra 2018 Sampler” where you can try 9 of their best teas at once. This is great if you aren’t quite sure what type of tea is your favorite. https://www.yatrateacompany.com/shop/yatra-2018-sampler
The aroma coming off of these leaves is perhaps the most beautiful we’ve seen yet. There is a pleasant chocolate aroma coming from the leaves, but this time it is more floral and balanced than some of the others. The leaves are quite small, and mixed colors. There is a blend of black leaves, stems, white buds and green leaves all mixed together.
The aroma coming from the brewed tea is sweet and mellow. As soon as I took the first sip, I knew I was going to like this one. There was an earthy bitterness that formed the main body of this sip, and the aftertaste was mouthwateringly astringent. This is one of the longer lasting tasting notes I have seen in these teas so far, and sometimes you can taste it on the tongue for a minute after your last sip.
I would characterize this tea as bold, but it is not a dark heavy black tea like some of the other ones I’ve had. It is more of a soft, light black tea with a pleasant flavor to it. The liquor of the tea is lighter as well, more of a light amber rather than a red or a brown. As a side note, there is some tea I left in the pot that is way over steeped and it picked up a strong taste of coffee! This is so fascinating and I’d love to study it more if I had the time, but sadly I do not.
This tea is making me feel quite calm and meditative. I just want to sit here and enjoy it for a while. I know the second steeping will be totally different but for now I want to just enjoy this one.
For the second steeping, I wanted to make sure I extracted everything from the leaves so I didn’t waste any of this delicious tea! I set the kettle to boil and steeped for about 5 minutes. The second brewing of this tea was nowhere near as powerful as some of the other second brewings I have had from Yatra. I think this makes it lose some points in my book. When you have a good second brewing, it is very important because when you have a tea with a strong second brewing, it’s almost like getting twice the tea! This tea is quite flat, and I don’t really detect many of the original notes. There is a tiny bit of astringency and a decent aftertaste. The liquor is actually quite dark, but it doesn’t produce nearly as much flavor as the first one. Don’t get me wrong, this is still miles better than a bagged black tea, but with so many amazing teas coming from Yatra Tea company, I think there are better options.
This tea had a very pleasant first steeping and a slightly disappointing second steeping compared to its counterparts. The first brew of this tea on its own may have been a contender for top 4, but with the weak second brewing, I think it will be the lowest on the list of black teas.
#1 Nepali First Flush from the Sakhira Estate
# 2 First Flush Darjeeling from the Singbulli Estate
# 3 First Flush from the Glendale Estate
#4: Second Flush Darjeeling from Marangi Estate
#5: First Flush Darjeeling from Puttabong Estate
#6: Darjeeling Oolong from Castleton Estate
#7: First Flush Darjeeling from Goomtee Estate
#8 First Flush Darjeeling from Thurbo Estate
#9 First Flush White from Castleton Estate
I had so much fun with this tasting series! I hope to do more of these in the future. A big thank you to Yatra Tea Company for making this happen and also everyone that read my reviews! Enjoy everyone!