Whenever “Russian” is in the name of a tea, I tend to shy away from it for fear that it might be a bit too smoky for my taste buds. I don’t mind if there is a slightly smoky essence to the tea – in fact, in some teas I quite enjoy it, but when a tea has an overwhelming or predominate smoky flavor, I don’t usually like it.
So when I received this sample of Russian Evening tea, I was apprehensive. After smelling the tea – woodsy tones, delicate notes of spice, with the slightest smoky edge – I decided to give it a try.
This blend of Darjeeling and Chinese black teas creates a remarkable flavor that dances upon the palate. There is very little to no smoke flavor to this tea, which is probably why I find it so appealing. The flavor is smooth, and there is a mild to medium astringency to the tea that leaves a clean finish, with hints of musk and spice in the aftertaste.
Kusmi Tea describes this tea as
Blend of black teas from China and Darjeeling
Appearance : furled whole leaf
Colour: very dark and coppery green, verging on black
Tasting advice: delicious plain or sweetened, this low-caffeine tea is ideal for the evening.
If a bold, brisk tea (such as Keemun or Assam) is an ideal breakfast or morning tea, then this is truly an ideal evening tea. Not as strong or full-bodied as a typical breakfast blend, this tea has a light yet vibrant appeal that works well for the relaxed, slower pace of your evening.
A small amount of sweetener brings depth to some of the spice undertones in this tea, although I found the tea to be very enjoyable without sweetener too. However, I do recommend drinking this hot. It is a very welcome tea to curl up to on chilly autumn evenings, perhaps next to a fireplace, reading a favorite book. This Russian tea has given me a reason to rethink my reaction to Russian teas – it’s absolutely delightful!