Darjeeling, on the southern slopes of the Himalayan Mountains in India, is the source of one of the world's finest teas. Darjeeling Tea is grown at high altitudes in a cool climate with intensive sunshine during the summer months. Darjeeling Tea has a distinct and unique flavour.
Because the annual harvest is limited, Darjeeling Tea is very sought after and will always be special. Its flavour cannot be replicated anywhere else. And not without reason Darjeeling Tea is called the "Champagne of Teas".
Viewed from above, tea estates look like a dense green mat, furrowed by narrow paths. The hilly terrain of the Darjeeling region in northern India requires intricate paths of plantings that curve around mountain slopes. From each tea bush, only the first few inches are plucked. For the finest of all Teas only the very tips of each plant are used – two leaves and a single bud.
The Darjeeling Tea bushes belong to a variety that is found outside China and Japan only in Darjeeling and the Caucasus: Camellia sinensis var. sinensis. Characteristic for this variety are its small leaves and long roots. The bushes can also withstand cold temperatures and are therefore ideal for growing in higher altitudes.
Darjeeling is a district of the West Bengal state in northeastern India, bordering Nepal and Bhutan. The district’s capital is also named Darjeeling. The name “Darjeeling” comes from the Tibetan words “dorje” (thunderbolt, originally "the sceptre of Indra") and “ling” (place or land), hence “the land of the thunderbolt”.
Geographical Indication in the food sector is well-known. Champagne is a classic example. Only sparkling wine from the Champagne region in France that has been fermented in bottles may be called by this name.For Darjeeling Tea applies the same, it is indigenous to the region of Darjeeling. Its incomparable quality is the result of its local climate, soil conditions, altitude and meticulous processing. Darjeeling Tea has its own special aroma and is being savoured by connoisseurs all over the world.
"Darjeeling Tea" you buy elsewhere might not always be from the Darjeeling region. The Tea Board of India, the official Indian tea authority, estimates that up to 40,000 tons a year are sold as "Darjeeling Tea" worldwide, although the district of Darjeeling only produces 10,000 tons a year. The Tea Board has been engaged in the protection and preservation of genuine Darjeeling tea. It has developed a unique Darjeeling logo as a seal of authenticity and awards licenses to companies that sell 100% Pure Darjeeling Tea. Each package of our Darjeeling Tea features our license number and the Tea Board of India's seal of authenticity.
Although there are many different teas, there is only one tea plant, camellia sinensis. The Latin word translates as “Chinese camellia,” and indeed the bush is a relative of the flowering camellia well-known to gardeners. All types of tea, except herbal teas also called tisanes, derive from this evergreen plant.
Similar to wine, one species accounts for many varieties of tea. As with wine, differences of soil, elevation, and climate are crucial to the character of the tea. A great deal of its quality and flavour depends on which leaves are plucked and how they are processed afterwards. There are two different types of camellia sinensis, the China type (camellia sinensis sinensis) and the more widespread Assam type (camellia sinensis assamica).
These two types and their hybrids account for about 3,000 varieties. The wild camellia sinensis can grow up to 20 metres high. Cultivated tea bushes, however, are pruned back to a maximum of 1.5 metres.
There is no doubt: Tea from Darjeeling is unique in taste and sought after by tea-connoisseurs around the world. But why is its taste known as muscatel, especially the Second Flush Teas, so unique? What makes it different from other teas?
There is a strong evidence that it is not only the soil, the climate, the harvesting method, the processing or all together, as always described, but, due to the high altitude the tea is growing at, the intensity of UV-light! The higher plants are growing, the more they are exposed to UV-light resulting in oxidative stress. To protect themselves against this stress, the plants developed certain compounds, the so called Flavonoids.
Flavonoids are antioxidants. Antioxidants accept electrons from reactive oxygen species caused by UV-radiation. In this way antioxidants inhibit respectively retard the plants cell damage. And because Darjeeling is one of the highest tea growing regions, its teas show consequently some of the highest amounts of antioxidants. These are, after harvesting and processing: Catechins - which belong to Flavanols, a subclass of Flavanoids - in green tea, and Theaflavins and Theobromine in black tea.
But Flavonoids do not only serve as antioxidants for tea plants. Derivatives like Flavonoid Glycoside are known to serve as antioxidants and also as aroma precursors. The higher the amount of these derivatives, the more aroma precursors are available and the greater is the aroma in intensity and/or complexity. This, combined with all the environmental aspects mentioned above as well as the impact of the processing makes the uniqueness of Darjeeling Teas.
Learn more about the Darjeeling Tea Gardens our Teas are sourced from...
Save up to 20% when you buy your Organic Darjeeling Tea in bulk!
- Save approx. 20% when you buy 1000g instead of 4 x 250g
- Save approx. 10% when you buy 500g instead of 2 x 250g
Check out the following table to find out how long your pack of Organic Darjeeling Tea will approx. last:
|Daily Usage||Daily Usage - Loose Leaf Tea||Package Size||Usage Duration|
|1 cup/day (250ml Tea)||2g Loose Leaf Tea||500g||8 Months|
|2 cups/day (500ml Tea)||4g Loose Leaf Tea||
|3 cups/day (750ml Tea)||6g Loose Leaf Tea||
|1 large pot/day (1-litre Tea)||8g Loose Leaf Tea||
Enjoy a great cup of ORGANIC DARJEELING TEA every day!