Darjeeling Teas in Short Supply

Darjeeling Teas in Short Supply

Delicate Back Teas

Firstly a little background. There has been almost no summer picking of tea in Darjeeling this year (2017) due to an ongoing political dispute. The consequence of this will be that Darjeeling teas are likely to become quite scarce and potentially much more expensive. If the situation is not resolved soon there is will also be a corresponding knock-on effect to blended teas which contain autumnal Darjeelings.

From a Darjeeling lovers perspective what to do? Actually, Darjeeling isn’t the only area in the foothills of the Himalayas growing delicate and aromatic teas so there are some choices.

Tea from Nepal

Nepalese tea, like those from Darjeeling can be delicate and delicious drinks, so much so, they are often easily confused! However, Nepalese tea’s growing reputation has led many to consider it the best kept secret in the tea industry due to its charming taste, diversity and its organic nature.

Compared to the leading tea growing countries, such as China and Japan, Nepal is considered to be a young tea producer. It is believed that the beginning of Nepalese tea was during the Rana Dynasty when the Chinese emperor presented the then Prime Minister with seeds that ultimately grew into the first tea bushes. By the 21st century the Nepalese tea industry had transformed into a fully profitable industry. Today, Nepal is considered a small but significant tea producer, producing over 16 million kilograms of tea. Tea in Nepal is mainly sourced from Eastern regions such as Jhapa, Illam, Dhankuta and Panchthar. The Eastern region borders the Darjeeling district of India and so the production of teas in these regions has directly been affected by the culture and practices of neighbouring Darjeeling.

We offer a delightful Nepalese Tea, Ronnefeldt Golden Nepal Type Maloom sold at £5.60 for an 100g bag. This tea is a fine, classic black tea full of fresh flavour and richness from the Autumnal harvest. It is light, with a tiny amount of sweetness. Try it now and buy from our website here.

Character: A colourful black tea, with silver-tipped leaves. It is a medium strength black tea that is smooth and fresh to taste.

Brewing: One slightly heaped teaspoon, 3-4 minutes.

Sikkim Tea

We also offer another charming alterative to a Darjeeling tea, from Sikkim, a small tea-growing area on the Eastern side of the Himalayan Mountains, to the North of Darjeeling. It has dramatic mountain peaks, lush green valleys and cascading rivers creating a breath-taking backdrop for the tea bushes. There is only 1 tea garden in Sikkim, The Temi Tea Garden, established in 1969 on an area of approximately 400 acres. The teas produced here are similar to Darjeeling's but are more full bodied and fruity.

Why not try Ronnefeldt Sikkim Temi sold at £6.70 for an 100g bag. This is a delicate yet tangy speciality of Sikkim’s most famous tea garden. This tea has the character of a fine Darjeeling and a little spice of Assam. Try it now and buy from our website here.

Character: Green-brown leaves with plenty of golden tips which give a powerful, sweet fruity aroma and a deliciously fragrant, almost honey-like flavour.

Brewing: One slightly heaped teaspoon, 2-3 minutes.

First Flush Darjeeling

Finally we couldn’t feature ‘Delicate Black Teas’ and not include a Darjeeling tea! Although the summer and autumnal pickings are badly affected by strikes, there are still lots of First Flush Darjeelings available.

Darjeeling teas are very popular, produced in West Bengal, high in the slopes of the Himalayas. There are over 80 tea gardens for this type of tea and each garden produces a tea with its own individual, natural taste and aroma. Darjeeling Tea is frequently known as the ‘champagne of tea’ due to its superb quality. When you choose a First Flush you will experience a delightful light and aromatic tea. Often with a little natural sweetness, these teas pack a powerful flavour punch, albeit with a light coloured golden-brown cup colour. They are delicious and the best ones are highly sought after.

One of our favourites at the Cup of Tea head office is Ronnefeldt Darjeeling Badamtan First Flush Organic sold at £9.50 for an 100g bag. This tea is fresh, light, clean and full of fresh flavour. Try it now and buy from our website here.

Character: A premium First Flush tea. These tea leaves have a very green leaf, with colours ranging from bright light green to dark olive and oaky brown. It has a refreshingly sweet muscatel flavour with traditional winey overtones.

Brewing: One level teaspoon, 3-4 minutes.

Posted by cup of tea admin
28th August 2017

Back to news