Grand Earl Grey from Mhai Diva

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Black

Where to Buy:  Mhai Diva

About Mhai Diva Tea:

Mhaidiva is pure quality tea. In general the following applies: the higher the tea is cultivated, the better the quality. Mhaidiva comes straight from the plateaus of Sri Lanka, the Nuwara-Eliya district, known as the ‘champagne area’ of Sri Lanka.

99% of the Mhaidiva tea is picked by women at the tea plantations, the women control the picking of the tea leaves with the fingertips in perfection. Mhaidiva is made by 100% Orthodox picked tea, qualitative the best way of picking.

Taster’s Review:

In her review of this tea, TeaEqualsBliss aka Jennifer states that this doesn’t taste like a bagged tea.  And I must concur … this is a very full-flavored, robust Earl Grey and if I hadn’t brewed it myself, I wouldn’t have guessed it was a bagged tea.

The black tea is brisk and energizing.  It has a remarkably smooth flavor without bitterness and very little astringency.  There is a hint of sweetness to the black tea – slightly caramel-ish.  This is a black tea that would be delicious on its own, made even tastier with the addition of the flavor of the bergamot orange.

The bergamot is citrus-y and lightly floral.  It doesn’t taste overly floral or perfume-y, just enough of a flowery note to add dimension to the overall cup.  The flavor is bright and slightly sweet with a nice tangy finish.

I can’t get over the fact that this is a bagged tea.  This is a bagged tea that will win over the loose leaf purists out there!  Yes it’s that good!

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Grand Pouchong from Tavalon

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Pouchong

Where to Buy:  Tavalon

Company Description:

A lightly oxidized oolong tea with a subtle, sweet aroma and complex flavor.

Taster’s Review:

This is a sample that I received with a recent order from Tavalon.  Quite smart on Tavalon’s part – luring me in to yet another tea that I love!

You might be wondering what a Pouchong tea is.  It’s actually an Oolong, but I like to make the distinction between Pouchong vs. Oolong because, even though this is an Oolong tea, it has some significant differences in taste from, say, a greener Oolong or even a dark Oolong.  I have often heard that Pouchong is somewhere between green tea and Oolong tea, and I would agree with that assessment.

I have really enjoyed the Pouchong teas that I’ve tried and this Grand Pouchong from Tavalon is no exception:  it is absolutely delightful.  It has a roasted nut flavor to it that is sweet and even lightly caramel-y.  Toasty!  There is a distant fruit-like flavor that vaguely resembles one might get if they were to cross a peach and a cantaloupe!  There are also hints of flower in the taste – honeysuckle, perhaps?

It is truly an intriguing, complex cup that keeps me sipping to see what else I might uncover in the layers of flavor.

I prefer Pouchong teas served hot, and this is generally true for most teas that I would categorize as complex, because those complexities are more distinguishable when the tea is hot.  As the tea cools, some of the complex nuances of the tea tends to become muted as a result of the chilling process.  So, when you really want to enjoy a tea for its many layers of flavor, drink it hot.  When you’re looking for cool, thirst-quenching refreshment, drink it iced!

This has a natural sweetness to it that I compared to caramel – and it does!  So, I do recommend tasting it before you sweeten it.  Sweetener, in my opinion, would really overwhelm this tea.  Enjoy it in it’s pristine perfection!

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