Monday, April 21, 2008

Uva Highlands BOP

Tea: Uva Highlands BOP - 4520
Vendor: Lupicia USA
Price: $5.00 / 50g
Vendor Description: Produced in one of the most notable tea gardens in Uva, this tea has a sharp astringency and salicylic acid aroma, which are the typical characteristics of Uva tea.

Leaf: The leaf for this tea was tiny. It looked almost more like coffee grounds than tea. This was probably the first tea that I have looked at that I knew was categorized as a BOP. (BOP = Broken Orange Pekoe, one of the lower grades of Indian tea grading scale)

1st Infusion: The color of the tea even reminded me of coffee. The flavor was very slow to start with a tang of bitterness at the onset. It was highly astringent with a lingering sense of bitterness. This was in line with the vendor description of the tea. The taste was rather unique though, I don't know how to describe the flavor, but it was a very powerful tea. It almost seems like the tea might be too strong/concentrated. Even though it feels so strong and concentrated it does not have a very strong body. As I was drinking this tea I could feel the strength of the flavor sliding down my tongue. It was a very unusual flavor all around. I think that the concentration might in no small part be played by the BOP grade of this tea. The smaller pieces would result in more surface area for the same mass of tea, thereby decreasing steep time.

Rating: 3/10

Conclusion: While I have heard this tea referred to a few times, I have not tried it before now. I'm not very impressed by it, although I could see it being a good tea for people switching from drinking coffee. It has a lot of the same characteristics as coffee. The astringency was a rather significant put off for me.

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