First of all, I would like to apologize for my lack of completed reviews over the past three weeks. The busy holiday season brought family and friends into town, and the usual surge in calls at my office. Also, the recent organization of my tea samples had me worried that I was running low on samples to review. Thankfully, I happened to open my box of samples from India and found one final sample from the Heritage Tea Assam Company. Today’s review, and the final review of a busy 2014, will focus on the Orthodox Golden Mystique Black Tea from Heritage Tea Assam Company, located in Dibrugarh, India.
To learn more about the Heritage Tea Assam Company, please visit their website. The sample packet has been opened, and what better tea to begin an eventful New Year’s Eve with than a strong Assam black tea? Let the journey begin…
The dry leaves have a uniform black color, with some golden tips in the mix. All leaves are small fragments, including tip fragments. The fragments have a uniform size and shape, and are machine rolled. The leaves crack easily into coarse crumbs. There are few thin bare stems in the mix. The smell has scents of malt, toasted grains, ripe red grapes, light roses, and what I think is a touch of vanilla.
Three grams of dry leaves were placed in a five ounce (150 ml) porcelain infusion cup. Purified water was heated to 205°F (96°C). The leaves were infused for 4:00 minutes.
My suggestion for at home preparation is to use three grams of dry leaves for every six to eight ounces (180 to 240 ml) of water to be used. Heat water to 205°F (96°C). Steep the leaves for 3:00 to 4:00 minutes. Expect two infusions out of the same serving of leaves, and expect the second infusion to be significantly lighter than the first, but still worth drinking. Add 1:00 minute to the second infusion steep time.
The first infusion produced a liquor with a deep orange-red color, clear and transparent. The aroma has scents of toasted grains, malt, ripe red grapes, light roses, and black pepper. The body is full, with a round texture. The taste has notes of malt, grains, grapes, black pepper, wood, and a touch of roses. There is a respectable astringency while the tea is hot, which lightens as the tea cools. The tea is also sweeter and more floral as it cools. The grains, malt, and light floral notes carry through the aftertaste, and a sweet and floral essence is left on the breath.
The infused leaves have a uniform copper color to dark brown color. All leaves and tips are small fragments. There are a few thin bare stems in the mix. The leaves have a consistent size and shape. The smell has scents of grapes, roses, flowers, and grains. As the leaves cool, the scents of fruit and grapes is incredibly pleasing.
The Orthodox Golden Mystique Black Tea from Heritage Tea Assam Company is certainly a high quality, aromatic, and satisfying black tea that will awaken the senses. Not overpowering, and nicely balanced, this Assam black tea is perfectly palatable on its own with no milk needed. This is a suitable morning replacement for coffee, since it will provide a pleasant boost of energy and awareness.
Thank you to the management at Heritage Tea Assam Company for providing this sample of Orthodox Golden Mystique Black Tea. Thank you to all of my readers for keeping track of The Tea Journeyman during the 2014 year, which was full of new experiences, education, and pleasure. I look forward to another great year of tea tasting in 2015, and hopefully more opportunities to present my readers with interesting and thorough reviews. Best of health, happiness, and success to all of you in 2015! Cheers!