Friday, February 15, 2013
Review: Bungalow by Steven Smith Teamaker
On my last visit to the local health food store, I noticed all of the Steven Smith teas were on sale. These are usually expensive teas, so I decided to spring for one. I took home Bungalow, which is a Darjeeling blend. I chose this tea because it is a mix of first and second flush Darjeeling and I can't remember trying such a blend before. If you've been following this blog, you'll know that I love a good cup of Darjeeling.
First flush Darjeeling teas are picked in early spring, and have a subtle, fresh flavor. The second flush leaves are harvested in June and are full bodied with strong muscatel notes that I usually associate with Darjeeling. I was interested to see how this blend would allow for the different flavors of both the first and second flush teas to come through.
From the first sip, it takes like a second flush Darjeeling. That strong muscatel with lightly sweet notes and a slight bitterness. There is a subtle hint of hazelnut and butter. The bitterness lingers slightly. I'm not sure that I'd recognize the first flush flavors in this cup, but it is still a rather satisfying Darjeeling. When steeping this tea, pay close attention to the time. Another extra few seconds will make this tea quite bitter, as I experienced with one my cups.
This tea has a strong caffeine punch. I had two (very large) mugs of it this morning, and I'm happily buzzing through my day. This makes a great early morning cup, but select something else in the afternoon if you are sensitive to caffeine. It is a full bodied tea which is perfect for this chilly, dreary NYC winter. I'm happy that I picked up this box of tea