Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: The Tao of Tea
Delicious green herbal, floral and citrus aromas. Full, smooth taste with a subtle turbinado sweetness.
I had to check out this tea before I brewed it, because the leaves are so large that they almost resemble a dark Oolong. But these large, twisted leaves are indeed black tea from the Nilgiri Mountains in South India.
Wow! Just when you think you know what to expect from a tea … I mean, this is a Nilgiri black, but it tastes quite unlike any Nilgiri tea I’ve ever tasted … or any black tea I’ve tasted, for that matter. This is incredibly smooth and has a lightness to it. The body and texture remind me a bit of a dark Oolong. It has that very soft, silken kind of mouthfeel to it.
I don’t know that I would describe this as a full-flavored black tea as mentioned in the above description. It has a lot of flavor and a complexity to it, but, I don’t know that this is what I think of when I think “full-flavor.” However, I do agree that there is a turbinado sugar sweetness to this… when I first tasted it (without any sweetener), I thought I might have absent-mindedly added a spoonful of turbinado sugar to the cup. But I didn’t. That flavor is a natural characteristic of this tea! Amazing!
While I really enjoyed this, I would suggest keeping this tea for an afternoon black, rather than something you enjoy earlier in the day when you need a jump start. I don’t think that this tea really has it in it to deliver a jump start, but, it does deliver a really smooth, calming cuppa.
1 thought on “Neela from The Tao of Tea”
The main subject up for discussion at last week’s online Tea Geek Tea Salon* was teas that have surprised us in some way — way better than we expected, way worse, way more interesting backstory… This fits in perfectly!
I also really like, and was really struck by, the Tao’s Neela. Your description matches with my experience very well; it’s almost like the lightness of the leaves themselves is directly reflected in the lightness of the flavor. I think I’ll have some this afternoon!
* If you’re interested in the tea salon, talk to Michael J. Coffey: https://plus.google.com/110623869766834238082/posts