Giddapahar SFTGFOP 1 SPL Black Tea from Tea Swan. . . .

Giddapahar SFTGFOP 1 SPL Black Tea from Tea Swan is the tea of the moment for me while not only typing up this review but pulling of a pretty sweet sip down!

I’m a fan of teas from the Giddapahar Tea Estate and this specific tea is an early First Flush tea from Giddapahar Tea Estate in the Kurseong Valley of the Darjeeling region.

Giddapahar SFTGFOP 1 SPL Black Tea from Tea Swan is produced with leaves from China plants and offer a sweet musk of this 1st Flush Darjeeling’s dry leaves. Once I began infusing the loose leaves – the scent decreases from sweet to vegetal while giving off a light coppery brew. I noticed the flavor change from subtle spinach greens to musky hay to floral on the end sip. I enjoyed the twists and turns this tea takes!

It’s a mighty fine offering from Tea Swan, indeed!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Black
Where to Buy:  Tea Swan
Description

Giddapahar black tea is very exquisite early First Flush tea from Giddapahar Tea Estate in the Kurseong Valley of the Darjeeling region.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Jungpana Spring Delight from Tea Swan. . . . .

Darjeeling Tea, is among the most special, and for good reason. The taste of many Darjeelings – especially THIS Jungpana Spring Delight from Tea Swan – is a wonder as it gives the smell of pure chocolate blended with spicy herbs. This variant of Darjeeling tea, hand plucked and hand rolled, is nature’s purest gift to mankind.

What makes this even more special in my eyes is that it’s organic. This was a 1st flush of 2017 and I’m coming to the end of my sample and wanted to write about it and share it with you before I ran out.

I infused the loose leaf for about 3 minutes at between 200-215 degrees and it seemed to infuse perfectly! At least perfectly for my own personal liking, that is.

Jungpana Spring Delight Black Tea from Tea Swan gives off the taste of fresh corn with a speck of marigold and gives off a deep, golden yellow brew. It’s truly delightful and delivers a full, robust flavor with very little astringency. When I read ‘smooth, refined and regal’ – according to the company’s website – I couldn’t agree more. It even finishes with a whisper of sweet citrus…how lovely!

This is a KEEPER to say the very least! Two thumbs up, indeed!


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:  Green
Where to Buy:  Tea Swan
Description

The taste of this tea is a wonder as it gives the smell of pure chocolate blended with spicy herbs. This variant of Darjeeling tea, hand plucked and hand rolled, is nature’s purest gift to mankind.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

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
Description

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!

Himalayan Golden Tips/Rakkasan Tea Co.

This black tea comes from tea farms in Nepal. The region they harvest is similar and close to Darjeeling but production is much lower than the famous Darjeeling due to previous wars and the fact that their tea industry is undeveloped. These days production comes from six districts: Ilam, Dhankuta, Kaski, Terhathum, Sindhulpalchok, and Panchthar. Golden Tips from Rakkasan come from the IIam district from small farms. While not true for all farms, this tea is hand-plucked resulting in the big tea leaves you see below. The color is due to the the oxidation after 10-14 hours of wilting.
As far as taste goes it is somewhat reminiscent of a Darjeeling. It sweet and yet refreshing on the palate. There are also subtle woodsy notes of mahogany. This tea does not need milk or sugar and I would highly recommend not adding either. Even though it is specified as a black tea, like Darjeeling, it has very unique and subtle properties that are hard to detect if things are added to the tea.

Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: Rakkasan Tea Company
Description:

Our Himalayan Golden Tips are hand-plucked and almost entirely made up of whole leaf buds. To make the fresh and stiff tea leaves flexible for shaping, the leaves are wilted between 10-14 hours depending upon climactic conditions. After gentle shaping, the leaves are fully oxidized, which turns the leaf buds a golden brown. This tea has creamy and cocoa notes that linger long on the palate—especially without milk or sugar.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!

Black Cherries in Sweet Cream from A Quarter To Tea. . . .

This Darjeeling, cherry, and cream tea is profoundly decadent. This blend tastes like a dessert that’s melty and gooey. The cream is so creamy that I feel like a farm where it came straight off the cow. Like, a fancy French cow.

A Quarter To Tea has a good grasp on cherries. I never liked cherries until their Chocolate Cherry Oolong showed up in one of my sample packs. It was a game-changer. So much so that my hopes were high for this one — and it succeeded.

When I went to this tea’s site, I discovered that this tea was inspired by Game of Thrones:

“Illyrio smiled as his serving men spooned out bowls of black cherries in sweet cream for them both.” (Dance with Dragons)

In case you forgot Illyrio (I did), he was the one that took care of the Targaryens while they were in hiding. If this is what he was serving people, well, I might hide out there, too. Does he have any space available?


Here’s the scoop!

Leaf Type:   Black
Where to Buy:  A Quarter To Tea
Description

“Illyrio smiled as his serving men spooned out bowls of black cherries in sweet cream for them both.” (Dance with Dragons)

Luscious black cherries with a medium body darjeeling base, paired with heavy notes of cream and vanilla. Decadent enough to make a magister proud.

Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!