Saturday, March 25, 2006

Tea Review 61 - Three More Assams

Rembeng Estate TGFOP
Romai Estate TFBOP
Season's Pick Assam Dejoo GFBOP
Upton Tea Imports

Assam Month may be winding down but it ain't dead just yet. This review is a bit of an anticlimax, coming after the quite yummy Khagorijan and Bukhial varieties that I expounded upon last time around, but these three aren't all that bad either.

Not to make too much of this price vs. taste thing that I've been going on about, but the Rembeng Estate, the most expensive of these three, was also the one that impressed me the least. Upton says that it has a pleasant aroma with floral nuances and hints of honey. I found the aroma to be a bit on the harsh side and the taste kind of so-so. Not bad, but just nothing to get worked up about. Upton also sells a cheaper tea from this estate, the Rembeng Estate CTC BOP.

The Romai Estate fared a little better. It was surprisingly smooth and tasty and I found nothing to quibble with in Upton's assertion that it's "a rich Assam with raisin-like aroma and robust character." It appears, just from my cursory research, that Upton is the only merchant - or at least the only merchant with a Web presence - to offer tea from this estate.

The best of this bunch, at least in my humble estimation, was also the least pricey. That would be the Dejoo GFBOP, which is "a blend of select lots from the 2005 Dejoo Estate harvest." There are a lot of tips in this one and I thought that it had a rather light taste for an Assam. Perhaps a bit at odds with Upton's description of it as a "hearty cup," but what the Sam Hill do I know anyway? Well, I know I liked it and that's good enough for me. Upton also carries two other, more expensive, teas from this estate - SFTGFOP1S and SFTGFOP1, which might be worth looking into.

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