Tea Company: SpecialTea Brew (website)
Ingredients: Black Tea
Vendor Suggested Preparation: not listed
This Assam Reserve tea was a World Tea Champion in 2009 and was manufactured for SpecialTea Brew of Redmond, Washington. The 5.6 gram sample shows a golden tippy, beautifully curled and twisted loose leaf Assam. For a black tea, the leaf is large and typical of a good whole leaf black Indian tea. I can imagine what the panellists were expecting. I am expecting a mellow malt, dense texture and malty cup of dark brew.
I checked the SpecialTea Brew site but there was no further information given about this award winning tea. Usually when a tea manufacturer calls the tea “Reserve” it is for a reason. There is some special characteristic about the tea that is put aside and is in limited quantities and is usually set at as a premium tea on the market due to its rarity. Too bad we don’t know more about this tea. I’m assuming this is a newly started business and is still under development. So, let’s see what the tea has to offer.
For tasting, I used 2.5 grams in 5 oz for 3 minutes. Following traditional preparation for an assam tea, use one teaspoon per person (approximately 2.grams) in a teapot with 8oz.boiling water over it and steep for 3- 4 minutes.
The tea was clear and bright, not dense with spicy nutmeg notes. With a low astringency or low briskness, the natural sweetness carries well in a full liquor. The malt flavours held true even with added milk. I was thinking of the hot Ovaltine drink and memories of my childhood came back. I found the tea complex with many malt notes to explore. There was something comforting and yet invigorating about the tea. Most remarkable is the malt flavouring in a bright clear cup. That takes a lot of skill. Please try this tea if you like different assams as it is very elegant as assam usually know for more robust qualities. Maybe the lighter tone of the tea is a new direction for Assam.
You can purchase the Assam Reserve directly from the SpecialTea Brew website.
Written by Karen Ryan
Its All About the Leaf Reviewer
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