Though summer is over, here, our memories of it still remain, like half-remembered dreams upon waking. While musing and reminiscing, what better companion is there, than tea?
The Imperial Breakfast Summer Blend from Verdant tea offers a lot to contemplate. Now archived (and no longer sold), Verdant has released their recipe, allowing us to know the composition of our cup. Chinese black teas are blended with a touch of Wuyi oolong, and very small portions of shou pu'erh and Bai Mu Dan white tea are added. This should be an interesting one to brew! Not-quite-boiled water will be poured over two teaspoons of leaf in a twelve ounce mug and steeped for three minutes.
The finished cup is highlighted by dark amber coloration...and very strong aromas. Bold might be a better descriptor for this tea. While the Chinese black teas are definitely noticeable, it is the Wuyi Big Red robe oolong that gives a unique edge (or more than an edge) to the tea. As of yet, the pu'erh and white teas are not lending much to the aroma.
The flavors underwhelm me at first. My sip starts juicy, yet with little flavor, and it finishes dry, yet flavorful. The little flavor in the beginning is edged with black tea astringency. The longer I let the tea sit in my mouth, the more different flavor notes come forth. The taste of oolong has been darkened greatly by the other teas, yet it is still pleasant and flavorful, once it comes out. White tea flavors (from the Bai Mu Dan) and oolong comprise the aftertaste, which lasts quite a while. The pu'erh does not make an obvious appearance, though it is likely lending an earthiness to the overall flavor.
On my personal enjoyment scale, I would rate this tea blend an 81/100. The aftertaste was great, the body was so-so, and the beginning was disappointing. Given that this blend is no longer for sale, Verdant has kindly shared the recipe on their website, for personal use, so you can try blending and brewing your own variation!
Photo credit to Built from Ink and Tea.
The recipe for Verdant Tea's Imperial Breakfast Summer Blend can be found, here.
This review was unsolicited and uncompensated.
Text is copyright 2015, Built from Ink and Tea.