Name: Scottish Breakfast Tea
Brand: English Tea Store
Type: Black tea, blend
Form: Loose leaf
Review: This is an interesting blend of Indian teas, including Assam, as well as Keemun from China. According to a video produced by the English Tea Store, one of the goals in the blending of this tea was to suggest the flavors single malt whisky aged in oak barrels.
(I suspect that the bit of Keemun, which often has a smoky characteristic, really enhances the oak-y notes in this blend.)
Scottish Breakfast Tea is fairly austere: I don’t pick up any natural sweetness when sipping this smooth, full-bodied tea. What I do pick up is a slight smokiness, as well as some woody notes. It isn’t terribly astringent, either, though if you let it steep long enough it can develop a slight bitterness. If you like a fairly neutral tea, this could be a good option for you, particularly if you want something that does not contain sweet/spicy notes that could provide an unpleasant contrast with food.
Preparation Tips: Use a heaping teaspoon of Scottish Breakfast Tea for every eight ounces of boiling water. The tea is fairly forgiving on steep times but I’d suggest a 4-5 minute steep for best results (maybe a little longer if you plan to add milk to your cup). Because the tea doesn’t over-steep easily,
Serving Tips: I think would go best with traditional breakfasts that include various types of meats, such as sausages, bacon or ham. The English Tea Store also recommends serving this with a bowl of oatmeal (porridge), which I suspect would also work quite nicely. If you sweeten your tea, try some honey in this one, instead of sugar: The honey is a better match with the oaky, woody notes. You could drink this tea on its own, but I feel that it is primarily a “food tea.”
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