Smell the Goodness of Nilgiri Tea

Nilgiri Loose Leaf Tea

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Nilgiri Loose Leaf Tea

The Blue Mountains.

If you are unfamiliar with this geographical area, this is the mountain range that towers over the south of India. It is the same mountain range that brings us Nilgiri tea as well as many of the world’s other fine black teas. But let us take a look at Nilgiri tea in particular.

What makes this tea special?

 How does it taste?

 And what does it taste good with?

First and foremost, Nilgiri tea has one of the most extraordinary fragrances that your senses will ever have the pleasure of discovering. In fact, Nilgiri tea is often called “The Fragrant One.” Although it is often thought to come in third place to Darjeeling and Assam teas, it can be grown throughout the entire year unlike the other two. And, because it is grown at very high altitudes in the midst of eucalyptus, blue gum, and cypress plants, it tends to have the most pleasing aroma. Because of this, it also has a taste that has subtle hints of mint, lemon, and eucalyptus. It is mildly reminiscent of Ceylon tea. You customers will savor ever drop of Nilgiri tea.

Nilgiri tea is one of the very few teas that can be enjoyed at any time in the course of a day – whether you want to drink it with your toast at breakfast, with a sandwich at lunch, or before heading off for a good night’s rest at bedtime. It can even be an afternoon treat with some biscuits, cookies, or crackers. With its completely balanced strength and consistency, Nilgiri tea will compliment just about any food at any time of day. This fact helps to make it a tea that can be appreciated by both tea connoisseurs as well as the average person simply craving a warm, soothing drink.

There are hundreds of Nilgiri tea estates located in India – among the best of them are Tiger Hill, Corsley, Craigmore, Pascoes Woodlands, Colacumby, Nonsuch, Dunsandale, and Chamraj. The tea industry here employs a great deal of local workers and greatly boosts the economy of the region.

Nilgiri tea has a much higher number of cups per measure, or cuppage, than other teas. This is because of the Crush, Tear, Curl (CTC) process that is used to manufacture it. During this process, the Nilgiri tea leaves are chopped by a machine into tiny, uniform pieces. They are then spread out on a flat surface, such as a table or counter, so that they can oxidize. It is during this time of oxidation that they develop flavor, aroma strength, and depth of body – making them the wonderful teas that your customers enjoy.

 Afterwards, the tea leaves are then hit with hot air to end the oxidation process. Teas that are made with the CTC process, such as Nilgiri teas, steep more quickly than other teas, taking only about two to three minutes to be fully prepared. And so, if your customers are looking for a delightful, quick cup of tea, Nilgiri tea is most definitely the tea of choice!

 

If you liked this article try reading:

 Yunnan tea: the most noble tea in the land

PG Tips – Vintage Tea Videos&

Tea Party Girl Asks: Do you drink Nilgiri?

Yunnan tea: the most noble tea in the land

yunnan-tea-horse-road

 

 

Are you looking for a very exquisite black tea with impeccable flavor?  Why not consider  what the Chinese deemed only good enough for their emperors and noblemen: Yunnan tea. Throughout the centuries, Yunnan tea has earned the reputation as being China’s “noble” tea. With its soft, lush leaves and subtle, yet rich, robust, and peppery taste, your customers will find Yunnan tea irresistible. One whiff of its smooth floral scent will enchant anyone in close proximity.  (this is my all time favorite tea!)

Once brewed, Yunnan tea has a red-amber color. It makes a superb breakfast drink – perfect to serve with some tarts, biscotti, pancakes, or other sweet breakfast treats. Beginners can rest assured that that this tea is foolproof. Even if you happen to over-steep Yunnan tea, it will not produce a bitter taste in your mouth. It will taste wonderful served either hot or cold. A splash of honey, milk, or sugar will also compliment it perfectly.

Yunnan tea is grown in Southwest China in the province of Yunnan, an area with jagged terrain that is dotted with high mountains and curving rivers. The climate in Yunnan is mild, with a significant amount of rainfall throughout the year. This results in very fertile land for the growth and health of tea trees. The Yunnan province is unique because it is known in China as the homeland of tea trees. Because of this, Yunnan catapulted China into being a leader in the tea industry. Over 2,100 years ago, the aboriginal tea, known as “wild tea” was made in this area. Today, there are still 3 ancient types of tea trees that grow in the Yunnan province, and they are often spoken of as the “living fossils” of Yunnan’s tea plants.

Drinking Yunnan tea has been widely known to have a great deal of health benefits. For years, the Chinese have consumed this tea after rich meals to help them digest the food. Tests done in the 1970’s have proven Yunnan tea to lower cholesterol levels in the blood. Yunnan tea contains no fat, no calories, and no carbohydrates. Clinical studies have also suggested that drinking Yunnan tea may help eliminate fat, reduce weight, and help people live longer lives.

There are many tea gardens in the Yunnan province of China. The “yun” in has the meaning of “cloud”. This is because most tea estates and gardens are at elevations of 3,000 to 7,000 feet above sea level. Recently, resorts have opened up in the Yunnan province, bringing tourism to this great tea area of the world. In May 2006, the Banyan Tree Lijiang Resort opened, and was immediately named one of the top ten luxury resorts for tea lovers.  At a resort such as this, visitors can enjoy Yunnan tea directly from the source.  

Any person craving the royal treatment – a relaxing morning with newspaper in hand and feet resting on a lounge chair – will enjoy a cup of Yunnan tea to accent the ambiance.

 

(note! If you want to learn about an AMAZING Yunnan travel experience check this out. http://www.wildchina.com/china-immersion-experiences/overview/tea-horse-road-with-jeff-fuchs-yunnan  )

 

Tea Party Girl asks:  Have you tried Yunnan tea?

Darjeeling Tea – Enjoying the Exquisite

Darjeeling-Tea

 

If you are looking for the champagne of all teas, then you will most certainly savor the light, sophisticated flavor and muscatel character of Darjeeling tea.

For centuries, Darjeeling tea has been known as a black tea that has a near-perfect taste. It is not only known as the most exotic of all teas, but it is also known as one the most expensive and brilliantly flavored teas in the world.

“Why is Darjeeling tea so exquisite?” you may ask. Well, the climate in which it is grown pushes it to its absolute limit of tolerance to the weather – and yet the plants still survive. Not only do they live, but the chemical compounds that create the luscious aroma in the leaves are increased. Thus, Darjeeling tea is exceedingly fragrant to the sense of smell. First and second flush Darjeeling teas are worth a great deal of money, and the money from this alone can actually support the entire region’s tea industry for an entire year.

The region that Darjeeling tea is grown in is the foothills of the Himalaya Mountains in India, at a very high altitude. The climate in this region is sub-tropical. This region has eighty-seven tea gardens, which if you are not entirely familiar with tea – is a very great number! An amazing sight to see, each garden has its very own character and landscape.

Approximately 52,000 Nepalese people are workers on these tea gardens. They strive to produce about ten million kilograms of tea annually. The tea gardens literally support the well-being of many families, and some gardens are centuries-old. According to the Tea Board of India, Darjeeling tea is “tea which has been cultivated, grown, produced, manufactured and processed in tea gardens in the hilly areas of the Sadar Sub-Division, only hilly areas of Kalimpong Sub-Division comprising of Samabeong Tea Estate, Ambiok Tea Estate, Mission Hill Tea Estate, Kumai Tea Estate, and Kurseong Sub-Division.”

The interesting thing to note about Darjeeling tea is that it has different tastes depending up the time of the year that it was harvested. Darjeeling tea leaves harvested in the springtime months (from late February to the middle of April) tend to have a more intense taste. However, Darjeeling tea leaves collected in the summer months are more developed, and therefore have a fuller flavor. Autumn-harvested Darjeeling tea leaves are not very common due to the fact that the weather is not always agreeable for growth.

When the weather is good, however, Darjeeling tea harvested in the fall has a very round taste, and often compliments breakfast food, such as pancakes, waffles, toast, breakfast meats, and biscuits very well. As an afternoon tea, Darjeeling can be quite delicious with treats such as scones and raspberry conserve.

You will notice that authentic Darjeeling tea is marked with a Darjeeling tea logo from the Tea Board of India. This logo has been around since 1983, and it verifies that the tea is 100% pure Darjeeling tea.

 The Advantages of a Daily Tea Ritual

PG Tips – Vintage Tea Videos

Tea Party Girl Asks?  Do you drink Darjeeling?  If so, when? 

Assam Tea- Bold, Rich, and Wonderful

assam chai tea

Growing along India’s Brahmaputra River amid tigers, jungles, and one-horned rhinos, you will find it. You will immediately notice its body, its briskness, its bold color, and its malt flavor.

It is Assam tea.

Assam tea is a black tea that is grown in the Assam region of northeast India. Unlike India’s Darjeeling tea, which is grown at high altitudes, Assam tea is grown in the lowlands of the country. These lowlands make up the world’s largest tea growing region.

In fact, the area alone produces over 1,500,000 pounds of tea every year on more than 800 tea estates. Assam tea accounts for 51% of the tea produced in India, and 1/6th of the tea produced in the world. Although much of the tea is commercial in quality, not all of it is. Some very expensive, high-quality tea is also grown here. It is interesting to note that China and Assam are the only two areas in the whole world with native tea plants.

assam chai tea

Assam makes a good base for Chai Tea

A British trader named Robert Bruce discovered the wild tea plant in India in 1823. Bruce had been on a trip to India when he came across the plant in the hills of Rangpur. Although Bruce died soon after his discovery, his brother, C.A. Bruce, made the tea known to the British government.

The British were more than happy to have the opportunity to attain tea from India, for at the time most British drank from China. It was very costly to have tea imported to Britain from China, and so India was considered a very good alternative. Not only was it more cost effective for the British to get their tea from India, but the Assam tea they found there was beyond enjoyable to their sense of taste!

Assam tea has a first and second flush, just as Darjeeling does. The first flush is immediately noticeable by a rich, fresh aroma, while the second flush is “tippy”. This flush is one of the most well known of the “tippy teas”, whereas it is a black tea with golden tips on it. Only certain tea estates have the abilities to produce these tippy teas.

The golden tips on tea leaves often make the tea astringent. This contributes to a smooth, sweet – not to mention malty – flavor that is often enjoyed by most avid tea drinkers.

Assam tea is primarily sold as a breakfast tea. It is also recognizable by the names English Breakfast Tea, Irish Breakfast Tea, and Scottish Breakfast Tea. It is a perfect compliment to biscuits, pancakes, waffles, toast, and other scrumptious breakfast treats.

However, Assam tea will refresh the mouth and body at any time of the day. It can be especially invigorating when it is served hot with milk and sugar. It is also very delicious when served with a slice of lemon or when it is used to make iced tea. You simply can’t go wrong with a tasty cup of Assam tea. It will soothe the senses, as well as the soul.

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Tea Party Girl asks: Do you drink Assam?  If so, with or without milk and sugar?

A Crash Course in Ceylon Tea

ceylon-tea

Are you searching for a type of tea to share with your tea party friend? Consider Ceylon tea from Sri Lanka.  This tea has an amazing rich heritage and goes well with a variety of simple tea menus for all times of day.  below you will find a great deal of information on this delicious drink. 

Produced in Sri Lanka, Ceylon tea is a black tea that is fully oxidized. It is grown all year round; however, the best and highest-quality Ceylon teas are grown in February and March and then again in August and September. In the remaining months of April, May, June, October, November, and December, the Ceylon tea yield is higher, yet lower in quality. Ceylon tea harvested in January has the lowest quality of all.

There are three types of Ceylon teas: high, medium, and low grown. The high grown Ceylon teas are the best quality, while the low to medium grown Ceylon teas follow behind. The high grown Ceylon teas picked at peak months of the year have a truly delicate flavor that your customers will certainly fall in love with. There are even some rare, highland Ceylon teas that grow at 7,000 feet – but these are very difficult to find and greatly expensive to purchase. Customers purchasing these teas will no doubt enjoy an exquisite and exciting adventure in both flavor and scent!

On the other hand, medium grown Ceylon teas have strong leaves and are typically sold for commercial use. The average tea drinker will appreciate a tasty cup of this brew. Lastly, low grown Ceylon teas produce strong, but plain drinks. They are often used as filler teas for blending.

The tea gardens in Ceylon that produce the best and highest quality teas include Nuwara Eliya and Dimbula. Keep in mind though, that these are also the highest priced! However, they can be well worth the money for avid tea drinkers who enjoy tasting rare and delectable drinks. Other tea gardens, such as Kegalla which lies in the low country, yield more common teas. These are sold worldwide.

Ceylon teas can be enjoyed with just about any type of food – especially breakfast foods such as biscuits, tarts, and toast. It can be enjoyed in the morning, afternoon, or as a soothing drink before laying down for a good night’s rest.

Other than water, tea comes in second on the list of the most consumed beverages in the world. Ceylon tea in particular is known for being a healthy drink to consume. It contains no calories, fat, or carbohydrates. Instead, it is a natural source of vitamins and mineral nutrients that help with a body’s growth, digestion and sense of well-being.

Recent research also shows that Ceylon tea is rich in dietary antioxidant flavonoids – even more so than than fruits and vegetables. These antioxidant flavonoids protect the body’s cells as well as the immune system. It is widely believed that drinking tea slows down the aging process and helps people live longer lives.

Other great articles on tea:

Keemun: The most popular tea in town

What is Kombucha?

Savoring the different tastes of Oolong teas

Tea Party Girl asks:    Have you tried Ceylon?  What is your favorite tea estate in Sri Lanka?