Glendale Estate, Nilgiri, First Flush 2017 from Yatra Tea Company. . . . . .

If this tea were a man, it’d be at the bar picking up ladies left and right — because it is smoooooooooooooooooooooth. It has a dark, slightly spicy, very earthy flavor that melts on the tongue.

This is a great example of a classic Indian black tea. If someone were like, “hook a sister up with a Darjeeling*,” I’d toss this into their lap. “Give this a whirl. See how India treats you,” I’d reply.

* (No one says things to me like this. I would be SO RECEPTIVE to someone making a nice, specific tea request. Usually I get someone waffling around, asking if, um, I have any tea, that’s like, uh, black? Can they have a cup of, uh, black? I have about 50 types of black tea. I need more specificity.)

Do you know the history of tea in India? LET ME TELL YOU A STORY.

Once upon a time, the British realized they liked tea. But they didn’t want to pay Asia for tea. So they took over India and made the locals grow it for them instead. And they still grow tea in India today.

Interestingly, Indian black tea tends to be lighter, and slightly spicier, than its Asian counterpart. It’s like the spices from Indian cooking somehow correlate with the soil. That’s not science, I know, but it sort of FEELS like it, which is almost the same thing.

Next time you’re a little lonely, let a nice Darjeeling slide into your cup. You might just find love!

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Yatra Tea Company

Residing at an elevation of between 4,000 and 6,000 ft., Glendale was established in 1835. Located in close proximity to the scenic city of Conoor in South India, Glendale is among the most recognized Nilgiri tea plantations and follows all global production standards.

Glendale, the anglicized version of “Gleann Dail” (Gaelic), roughly translates to a fertile valley and comprises of 3 gardens which combined make up 525 hectares of planted area.  Typical mountainous conditions allow for the production of distinctive “high grown” teas. The estate has a flourishing ecosystem, and while technology is pervasive, it exists without disrupting the essential characteristics that makes Glendale teas so sought after.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!


First off I do not know what flush this was picked or what year.

But if I were to guess it would most likely be either 2016 first or second flush or it could be that this is indeed the 2017 flush.

I don’t drink straight up black teas like this often. Mainly because most people who drink them add milk and or sugar and I do not tend to do that. Except this time.

After tasting it every minute while steeping. I decided 4 minutes was prime. It screams put milk in me. It has a bit of a bitterness to it along with the earthy forest flavors that make it seem prime for a spot of milk.

And so…. I added some after my initial plain cup. Of course because I’ve only added milk a handful of times… I messed up.

Too much almond milk. Now it’s more like a latte. After steeping the leaves directly in the almond milk for a bit longer it now seems better.

Quite tasty actual. It helps bring out some of the nutty and wet earth notes and mellows out the bitterness.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Yatra Tea Company

Crepy leaves that yield a medium-dark liquor, with a slightly woody, malty aroma, and a medium body with mildly brisk character.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Thoughts on Himalayan Bliss Estate, Nepal, First Flush 2017 / Yatra Tea

Not to be confused with a Darjeeling.

Many of the same attributes found in a Darjeeling can also be found in this tea. (Starting to feel like Darjeeling should be a tea type like black, green, etc). Fresh in both smell and taste.

This interesting clonal tea is apparently surrounded by other Darjeeling estates and while this doesn’t automatically make it better for processing it as a Darjeeling it does help in developing the flavors.

Just like the mountainous regions of Taiwan make amazing oolongs.

Anyway, this tea is very refreshing. As it’s cooled I find myself enjoying it more. It doesn’t have quite a muscatel flavor like many Darjeelings do but it has that fresh aftertaste.

This tea is honestly hard to describe because it really doesn’t have any descriptors on the flavor wheel. Try it yourself, you’ll see what I mean.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Yatra Tea Company

2.5 gms (approx. 1 tsp) per 6 oz of filtered water, steep for 3-4 mins at 203 F/95 C.

Vary leaf quantity, brewing time, and temperature per individual preferences.

Champagne gold color, with a sweet, fragrant aroma, and clean, refreshing taste.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Glenburn Estate Darjeeling, First Flush 2017 from Yatra Tea. . . . .

Darjeeling teas fall somewhere on the spectrum of black teas, green teas, and oolong teas, depending on their level of oxidation.  This 2017 First Flush darjeeling is a high quality blend from Glenburn Estate and from the Yatra Tea Company.

The dry leaves are a very dark green, and tightly curled.  I used the recommended brewing of 185 F water with a steep time of 3 minutes.  Brewed, the tea was fragrant, green and fruity, and very much in the oolong-family of of scents.

The taste was driven by a muscatel stone-fruit flavors, a green and pleasantly tart, almost fermented, frutiness.  This tea was bright and sunny, with notes of apricot and white grape, coupled with a lush green undertone. The mouthfeel was very smooth in texture, though I don’t taste as much buttery flavors as I might expect.  The more I sipped, the more gentle lemon and citrus notes became apparent.

This is definitely a fruit-forward tea, perfect for springtime brewing.  Even if flowers aren’t quite blooming in your garden, watch these tea leaves bloom in your mug and enjoy the sweet fragrance and experience.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Darjeeling
Where to Buy: Yatra Tea

High in the Himalayas, overlooking the intimidating Kanchenjunga mountain range, lie the rolling tea fields of the heavenly Glenburn Estate. Founded in 1859 by a Scottish tea company, Glenburn is one of the oldest Darjeeling estates and many of the laborious routines appear to be unchanged till date on this 750 hectare estate.

In addition to traditional Darjeeling black teas, Glenburn produces a superior green tea at specific times of the year. Yatra Tea Company proudly presents an April 2017 offering harvested exclusively for us.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Sakhira Estate from Yatra Tea Company. . . .

The first thing I noticed about this tea was its light, fuzzy leaves. I got really excited, because I know that this means they were plucked at JUST THE RIGHT MOMENT when the leaf is FRESHLY, FIRST FUZZY. Is this fact upon the official site for this tea? NO. It is NOT. You got that information STRAIGHT FROM ME. YOU ARE WELCOME. Now go forth and tell everyone you know about tea fuzz.

I thought, based on the tea’s fuzzy mid-green appearance, that it’d be delicate. After steeping, the water was still really light, reinforcing that perception.

Nope! This is a potent flavor! It’s a very smooth, amber sort of flavor that’s sweet and thoughtful.

Imagine a harp and a violinist playing together at a midafternoon wedding. Everyone is dressed sharply. The feeling in the air is electric. Spring is settling into summer, and the sun is out.

It’s a beautiful afternoon for them, and for you, when you give this a whirl.The spring fuzzy leaves are carrying their sunshine into your cup.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy:  Yatra Tea Company

Known worldwide as home to some of the largest mountains in the world, including Mt. Everest, Nepal is an underrated tea producing nation that has started to gain some prominence among discerning tea drinkers. Nepal is comprised of 75 districts, one of which is Ilam. Ilam is located in the Mechi Zone in the easternmost part of Nepal. It borders the Darjeeling region of India, which affords it very similar soil and climatic conditions.

Approximately 12 miles from the Ilam bazaar lies the Sakhira Garden. Named for its location (Sakhejung Hill Range) this estate is relatively young, founded in 2000 by the collective efforts of a group of small farmers. The production facilities reside at 4,000 ft. while the plantations that provide tea to the factory are perched at an altitude of 6,000 ft.

With a singular focus on harvesting only the highest quality black Orthodox teas, the produce of Sakhira is poised to give the vaunted Darjeeling teas a run for their money!

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!