Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Margaret`s Hope 1st Flush Darjeeling tea 2009

Margaret’s Hope 1st Flush Darjeeling tea 2009

As days past away hunting for good teas in various gardens in Darjeeling, I got a call from Mr. Anil Gurung (factory assistant) Margaret’s Hope Tea Estate that a couple of excellent batches of tea have just been made and I should be there by the early morning on the 21st of March 2009 as another big buyer from Japan was coming for the same tea, so I quickly took my camera and started my journey from Darjeeling to Margaret’s Hope, we were passing through some very steep road and beautiful scenery could be seen from the car’s window but I was actually getting impatient, finally I happened to reach the garden and I saw Mr. Anil Gurung and Mr. Pande (Manager of the garden) waiting for me, I immediately got down from the car and we all headed for the tea tasting room of the garden, after I reached there I came to know that the big Japanese buyer had given her bid for the teas and wanted the teas at any cost, so I was a bit nervous while we did the tea tasting but I must say both the teas were simply excellent, the first one that I was offered was the Margaret’s hope ftgfop-1 china spl.DJ-4 which was made from pure china origin (bushes grown from the seeds)leafs and shoots, had a very bright leaf appearance and the cup showed some very interesting fruity character and the most important factor regarding this tea was that it had an after taste of young fruits and flowers that remained on the palate for a long time so there was no turning back ,so we had a stiff bidding completion with the other Japanese buyer and luckily we got the tea, Infact I was very happy that I got a very nice tea in the time when there was very less amount of good teas in Darjeeling, the next tea was this tea called Margaret’s hope (Wonder) White tea, this tea is made exclusively made for us from young clonal bushes like AV2 and P312 by Mr. Gurung (factory assistant ,Margaret’s hope),with full unsorted long leafs and full sized buds, I must say it’s a master craftsmanship right from the tea plucker who carefully plucked the tender shoots and buds to the factory assistant who made the tea, its simply a beauty from dry leaf to the cup, a true champagne of the 1st Flush Darjeeling.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Puttabong Queen sftgfop-1 Dj-7 1st Flush 2009

Puttabong (Tukvar) sftgfop-1 DJ-7 1st Flush Darjeeling tea 2009

I was a bit upset to see most of the early invoice 1st Flush tea samples to comprise mostly of dry and dehydrated leafs in the teas from various gardens in Darjeeling as there has been no rainfall since last October 2008, it looked hard to get a very good tea but it was not impossible to get one, so after judging the various factors of the situation I called up Mr. Somani (superintendent) of Puttabong Tea Estate as this is one of the highest tea plantation in Darjeeling and they make some great 1st Flush teas every year, I had a long discussion with him over the phone as I had received some tea samples from them which impressed me a lot, so I told him that the 1st tea of the season that I want to offer in my list should be the best among all as usual and after hours of discussion he suggested me that I should wait for a couple of days since the young clonal fields of the gardens were filled with fair amounts of tender young shoots and buds, so after two days he told me that he asked few of his expert tea pluckers of the garden to finely pluck the one leaf and a bud from the young bushes during early hours of the morning when dew drops are present on the leafs and buds so that the shoots remain even more tender which is good for the production.
I must say those couple of days was really worth for waiting as the made tea was one of the finest we might have ever offered, the made tea consists of extravagant number of silver tips and the leafs look extremely greenish, the cup gives out an excellent flowery and fruity aroma and some hints of young mangoes remains on the palate with some sweetness as an after taste. This is how the Puttabong sftgfop-1 Queen Dj-7 was made.
I also cannot stop writing about the fact that I’m lucky be a part of Tea Emporium, Darjeeling which has been in the trade for generations now, and the reputation which surely backed me up to get the best invoice of the season when there is a very large scarcity of good teas in the market, and I also feel sorry for the merchants that I know are just struggling to get anything in hand at the very moment, and even if it rains now there will be no magic as the soil is heated now and the rain will make more leafs grow but the quality factor will go down.
Similarly like the Puttabong Queen, we have more good teas to offer in the near future and we invite all tea lovers to join the tea party.

Monday, March 2, 2009

High Hopes for Darjeeling tea 1st Flush 2009

It has been an uncertain winter since December 2008, where one cannot say either Darjeeling has received enough cold or cloudy weather which is natural at this point of time but it has been rather sunny ,clear days and nights filled with bright stars in the sky and some full moon nights.Well taking about the situation of spring 2009 teas,I`ll say we have a great expectation as I passed through Kurseong ,through some great tea making gardens like Castleton and Margaret`s hope,I saw most of their clonal field were prunned and its a good sign as when the spring starts, we will get to see some great fresh and young teas,but its all dependant on the mercy of the nature as we need some serious winter rains right now but the question is when???? its been cloudy almost everyday from the last week in the end of February 2009 but due to extreme heavy winds the clouds are shattered and chased away and we are still hanging on for winter rains. We expect to have some great early teas from Namring and Thurbo as the weather conditions in these areas are still bit alright than the other gardens.
I cannot stop myself from writing about the winter crop, as I see some companies selling these teas as early 1st Flush starters,but its too funny as these types of teas belong to the dormant harvest period as the leafs in this time are extremely dehydrated ,so the appearance of the winter teas are rather dry and sometimes looks like a mixture of green and burnt leafs, the basic character is neither like the Autumn Flush and not even like 1st flush, but the truth is IT Sells! but one should not keep this type of tea for a long time in stock as this types of tea will lose its flavour each day and may be by a month a brew will only give away a cup of hot water and nothing else......
anyways we have been bombarded with e-mails each day for the new crop for 1st Flush 2009,all I want to say to all is that, Please have patience and we`ll offer you teas that have been value for your money for years!.....Cheers!