Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: M&K’s Tea Company on Etsy
India Assam region is home to some of the world’s grandest teas. Our Tezpur estate Assam tea is a great, brisk, and malty tea. It’s great for the morning and relaxing in the evening, try it any time.
Learn more about this tea here.
Oh … lovely. (Imagine satisfied sigh here.)
This is the kind of Assam that I absolutely adore. It’s bold and malty. It’s smooth. It’s not bitter. (I’m sure it would be bitter if it were brewed too long, it’s always important to watch the brew time with Assam teas, it’s been my experience that they’re not a very forgiving sort of tea.)
It’s mildly sweet yet it has a certain invigorating, bracing flavor that I want as my first cup of the day!
To brew this tea, I used my Kati Tumbler. I tend to like my teas a little on the stronger side, and the amount of tea that was in my sampler from M&K’s appeared to be enough for a weak brewing in my Breville or a strong brewing in my Kati, and I opted for the strong brewing in my Kati.
I poured the contents of the sampler into the basket (save just under 1/2 teaspoon which I added to my “breakfast tea” tin – a tin that I keep with small remnants of black tea that are too much to throw away but not enough to brew a cuppa, so I put the small amount of tea into the tin until there’s enough for a pot of tea). Then I heat the water to 205°F (I tend to go with a slightly lower temperature with Assam – remember, they’re a little finicky) and poured 12 ounces of water into the tumbler and let it steep for 2 1/2 minutes. Perfection!
The rich tasting tea doesn’t need additions – it tastes great served straight! But, if you’re one who likes a little honey or sugar and milk in your breakfast tea, this tea would certainly take those additions well. It would make a marvelously rewarding latte!
To brew a latte, I recommend steeping it a little strong – instead of taking out that aforementioned just under 1/2 teaspoon of tea to add to the breakfast tea tin, keep it in the basket so that you have a strong brewed tea. The key for stronger tea that tastes great isn’t to steep it longer, it’s to add more leaf. Steeping it longer will produce a stronger tea, but it will also produce a more tannic brew: tannic = bitter. Use a little extra leaf and steep for the 2 1/2 minutes. Then add the dollop of honey or other sweetener of your choice and some steamed milk for a yummy morning latte!
The sip starts out strong and I taste the sweet, caramel-y notes immediately. Then I start to taste some of the stronger, more rugged earthy notes, hints of leather and fruit notes. The fruit notes remind me of raisin and dried stone fruit – like the sugary sweetness from a dried plum.
As I continue to sip on this tea, the astringency does build. It started out with barely any astringency, but now I am getting a distinct dryness on my palate at the very tail of the sip and in the aftertaste, my palate feels like it’s been patted dry with a soft cloth. Like it’s preparing me for another sip.
The description above suggests that this would make a good evening tea, but, I don’t know that this is a tea that I could drink very late into the evening. It would keep me awake and alert for a couple of hours. It’s got some gusto!
For a breakfast tea though – this is the stuff! It’s awesome!