Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Rohini First Flush Darjeeling tea review - mastersteas.com

MastersTeas (owned by Adagio teas) asked if I’d like some tea samples to review, and since I’ve enjoyed many of their teas, I of course said yes! Plus I was really excited to brew the tea using the gongfu method with my new tea set up.

I started with the Rohini First Flush Darjeeling tea.

From the website:

The 'first flush' tea of the spring in Darjeeling is famous for its lively bite and abundance of fresh flavor. These rare teas look almost like green teas, but they are actually black tea. Our Spring Darjeeling is a spirited embodiment of these qualities. This year’s DJ1 offers a fresh bouquet of bright fruit blossom notes. Silky texture with white grape, floral, and sultana notes with a hint of minerality and a soft finish. This tea comes to us from the Rohini Tea Estate located in the Kurseong valley of Darjeeling, India. Its elevation of roughly 4400 ft imparts complexity to the infusion. Our 2020 first of the year, super early, late February harvest is a rarity that we could not pass up. Limited availability!

This tea contains a high level of caffeine

Steep at 212° for 2-3 minutes.

I started off steeping it the recommended method. I used 1.1 grams of tea (I have a very accurate scale I use for my tea these days) steeped in 150 mL of water at 212°F for 2 minutes.

Maybe it’s because I’ve been doing gongfu steeping for a while now, but it seemed like I used very little tea, but it came out with a strong, rather typical Darjeeling flavor, a little grassy and maybe a very tiny bit “stewed” tasting, with a faint honeysuckle scent. It had a light, clean taste that somehow reminded me of peach pits. The delicate flavor of the tea went well with scones, cookies, and sweet baked goods.

Next I tried it gongfu style, using 6 grams of tea in 200 mL of water at 212ºF for 15 seconds, and each successive steep was increased by 5 second increments.

The first steep was very similar to my longer steeping, but a little lighter and without the stewed flavor.

The second steep was when it really changed. Suddenly it had a more floral scent that reminded me of lemon blossoms, very refined and delicate. I tend to like floral scented teas so this was right up my alley.

By the third steep, the lemon blossom scent was even more pronounced and was absolutely wonderful.

The tea was weaker by the fourth steep, but still flavorful. The fifth steep was noticeably weaker and I stopped there.

So overall, the first steep was pleasant but the successive steepings were exactly the kind of floral scented taste that I love in teas. I don’t mind Darjeeling teas, although I tend to prefer other types of tea depending on my mood and what I’m eating, but this tea has been an eye-opener for me. I had no idea a Darjeeling could taste so different when done gongfu style.

If you like Darjeelings, I can definitely recommend this tea. But it’s only limited quantities, so you’ll have to order it before they run out. If you’d like try MastersTeas.com, send me an email with your email address and I’ll have MastersTeas send you a $5 gift certificate.

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