Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Darjeeling Tea Time

About 12 years ago I was given a box of Darjeeling teas.
For those that don't know, Darjeeling teas come from the region of Darjeeling in India.
With the first taste from this box, I determined I didn't like Darjeeling teas.
The box sat on my shelf for 5 or 6 years until one day I decided to toss the tea
in the garden; but there would be one more taste before I did that.
What a difference a few years made, including a more educated palate;
the tea was quite wonderful and I ended up eventually drinking the whole box.
Now my early thoughts were that there was only one Darjeeling tea.
As you will see from the following list there are many varieties depending on
the tea estate and how it was processed.
Golden Tips Tea sent me the following teas to review
and I have thoroughly enjoyed each one.
To me it is like walking in the beautiful surroundings of Darjeeling, India
and savoring the flavors of each and every estate.
The first word in the naming of the tea is the estate name, after awhile you just
know what to expect from them.

Jungpana Premium Darjeeling, fruity and delicious, the fragrance fills my senses.
Giddaphar Muscatel, from the first sniff when opening the bag I was delighted,
it was like blossoms in the back of the throat.
Arya Ruby Darjeeling, a full leaf tea,, light in color and flavor,
more of a touch of springtime, reminded me of an oolong.
Gopaldhara Gold, softness of the garden in springtime.  It took a cooler,
shorter steep to bring out the flavor.
Badamtam Darjeeling, soft scent of roses in the cup, the flavor filled my
mouth with a smile.
Halmari Gold, this one surprised me.  Coming from Assam I expected it to be bold
in my face flavor, the first sniff almost smelled of fermentation, a very nice full
bodied, smooth black tea.  Of the teas reviewed here, this is the only one I have
included that isn't from Darjeeling.

You can find these lovely teas or other teas at www.goldentipstea.com
Thanks, Golden Tips for sharing your special teas with me.


Sylvia said...

I had the same experience when I first tasted my first cup of Darjeeling Tea, Marilyn. I didn't like it but tired it again and it was somewhat better. Maybe we just have to cultivate a taste for it. I will try it again.

Jeanie said...

That has to be a Johnson Bros. cup, isn't it? I love their patterns!

I have memories of my dad telling me of his time in WWII when he was stationed in India and took up (for a while) with a tea planter's daughter. I wonder if it was Darjeeling? I must find that letter where he described being on a tea plantation. At least, I think there was a letter along with conversations... how amazing.

Ruth W said...

I dearly love Darjeeling...my favorites...I think they have such a complex lovely flavor!

Judith @ Lavender Cottage said...

Hmm, I'm still trying to decide about the Darjeeling I purchased. It says best without milk but I like milk and honey in my tea. Any idea why they suggest not to add milk Marilyn?

Margie said...

The first Darjeeling I tried was from Margaret's Hope Estate. I wasn't too keen on it at first, but I eventually acquired a taste for it. Now I'm open to trying out other Darjeelings.

Bernideen said...

I love your cup and saucer and the tea looks delicious!

Steph said...

I'm so glad you've come to love Darjeelings!

Mary said...

You put me to shame when you talk about teas - you are such an expert! I drink Darjeeling now and then but didn't know there were so many. I would like to try some of these some afternoon.

So Marilyn, do you mean to tell me that those teas I have stashed away that are outdated will still be drinkable? I hold on to them because I can't bring myself to throw them on the compost pile!

Mary X

Tracy said...

GORGEOUS, gorgeous image, Marilyn--that hit of aqua with all warm tones of pink and brown is so refreshing in an exciting way! My first take of a Darjeeling long ago was undewhelming for me too. I've come to like Darjeelings a lot. And a lot does depend on processing. That first one on the top of your list sounds lovely! So does the Arya Ruby...and that last one, and Assam, really, sounds very good too! Like Jeanie said, Darjeelings are so complex. My first taste ages ago, I wasn't ready for complex... LOL! Now, I like growing my palate. ;o) Gosh I feel thirsty for a cuppa now... LOL! Happy Days ((HUGS))

Angela McRae said...

Isn't it funny (and nice!) how our tastebuds change over time? I think that makes experimenting with various tea tastings so fun. I used to think I didn't like green tea at all, but now I love it.