Thursday, February 11, 2010

Harney and Son's Stanley's Blend - Wednesday, Feb. 17th

Oh Harney and Sons. So many teas, so very little time. As the tea samples come in to review for Teaviews I find myself drinking more and more tea in an "evaluation" setting. For me, an evaluation setting is a clean palate and undivided attention to my notes and the tea. While it's nice to sit around and focus intently on all the subtle aspects of a blend or's also hellaciously nice to sit around and drink a cup of tea while reading, watching movies, or playing video games. I decided to pop into my review cup one of the family favorite blends that I managed to steal a sample of from the house. Stanley's Blend is a blend made by John Harney in tribute to his tea-tutor, Stanley Mason. So, cheers Stanley and John. This quaff's for you. Here are the notes:

Nose is malty. Assam background, I think. Has a tinge of sea brine to it as well. Little bit of smoke and spicy/nut-like quality that I can't put my finger on. It almost smells like wet dog but in a very comforting and good way. Like the smell of your favorite pet after a clean spring rain. Reminds me of curling up with my dog, drinking tea, and reading. If Sir Mixalot was a tea connoisseur, he'd say that this baby got back(bone). Sorry, lame pun but I couldn't help it.

Taste is slightly bitter but in the way that a good IPA can be bitter. A lot of people think that when I say bitter it's a bad thing. I like IPAs, so...not quite. Earth and a vegetable quality I typically find in greens is wayyyy down deep and buried but present. Slight wood (oak?). Some malty sweetness in there, along with a dark Indian tea strength.

Tea notes: It's blend of Assam and Darjeeling. I'm guessing mainly Assam with Darjeeling for that woodsy spice qualities.

Here are some pictures. The dry:

The liquor:

The spent leaves:

In other news, this weekend is the NYC Coffee and Tea Festival which I will be attending. As press. If you're in the neighborhood and feel like stopping by, I should be there early Saturday. Just wave if you see me. Oh, and introduce yourself, if you please. I'll be with my mom (who likes tea and the city) but don't be shy. She's awesome. In her own way.


1 comment:

  1. Definitely has the coloring of a Darjeeling. Not as chocolaty looking as an Assam. Probably try brewing it lighter to see if it brings out more of the Darj characteristics.