I had been ogling this tea for a while because, I confess, I was attracted by the box. The lovely stylized print, the combination of pale straw yellow, the lovely orange-ish congo pink, and dark purple – it just works really well for me, and I am a sucker for pretty graphics.
I am not familiar with white tea and elderflower – in fact, I had to check the Italian translation of elderflower to find out which flower it is! And I was suprised to discover that this is the sambucus flower; I always associate that word with the italian liqueur Sambuca, which is very strong and I personally find absolutely nasty. So when I smelled the top of the box (yes, I am that person that sniffs around the tea aisle looking for something enticing…) I was pleasantly surprised to find the sweetest, most delicate scent. I ended up buying the rose tea, instead, and I would have more or less forgotten about this one if yesterday I hadn’t seen the pretty straw yellow box in the clearance section, for just one pound… needless to say I grabbed it in a nanosecond and happily shoved it under the nose of all my flatmates because really, this scent is so good, everybody needs to know 🙂
As I said, I find this tea’s scent simply irresistible. The elderflower attracts me like a bee, lemony and creamy. There is an added apricot natural flavour, and it’s just the proverbial icing on the cake – I always have a soft spot for the soft, velvety sweetness of apricots, which remains nonetheless fresh enough not to be nauseating. Under it all, the delicate, slightly malty flavor of the white tea brings these flavors together; it’s like a canvas, acting as a base for the delicate hues of apricot and elderflower, grounding them.
The taste, I have to say, is not quite as intense as the scent… but unfortunately this is quite common, and I’ve had to resign myself to the fact I will always be disappointed, with the notable exception of last month’s rose tea (at least it’s still better than the time a deliciously-smelling tea turned out tasting like cow manure. But that’s a story for another time). You get a last trace of scent just before you take a sip; the warm liquid in your mouth is delicate and sugary, but you can’t really distinguish the flavors; and, after you swallow, the flavors linger on your tongue – first a burst of elderflower and, after, the lingering sweetness of the apricot. After you finish the cup, it’s the overall malty and fruity white tea that lingers in your mouth, and you can still feel the sugary taste on the inside of your cheek.
If you prefer stronger, bitter flavors, you probably won’t be a fan; but I love sweet, sugary teas, so this is absolutely perfect for me! I would buy it again, even though I prefer enjoying the scent of the dried tea to the actual brewed tea.