Its small, tightly wound dry leaves smell of faint sweetness and tangy wood-raisin depth.
It's time to make tea. The tea matters, the water matters, the intent matters.
When this tea hits your lips its slick smooth character is immediately obvious, this is as smooth as Darjeeling teas get. Its creamy oxidized taste has a full mouthfeel with mild subtle dryness. The fruity sweetness that ones mind has come to expect with Darjeeling blacks, hasn't materialized. This allows more attention to be given to creamy oxidized notes. This is not to say that this tea is not sweet. The sweetness is more embodied in the aftertaste more than in initial impression.
As the next infusion comes along, a juicy demerara sugar sweetness is often overlooked by the blanketing smooth, bland, oxidized profile of this tea. Some very faint fruitiness can be sensed in all of it too, but, like the sweetness, it is a bit hard to uncover under the overbearing smoothness of this tea.
In later infusions, the sweetness on the breath develops a raisin flavour which seems to become more apparent in later infusions. When brewed with longer infusions the oxidized flavour is more apparent throughout and slippery smooth dryness prevails throughout.