Saturday, October 31, 2009
Castleton (ftgfop-1) Autumn china spl. DJ -357 Autumn Flush 2009
We all know that the Castleton Tea Estate in Darjeeling is best known for its china type muscatel teas which are made in 2nd Flush and some in Autumn Flush. The garden could not provide us with any of its Muscatel teas in the 2nd Flush as they were under forward contract meaning some one had booked all their muscatel teas in 2nd Flush, I constantly kept in touch with the management during the 2nd Flush but failed to get any of it and when I was offered the muscatel teas after the contract was over the monsoons had kicked in and we had to reject the teas then but I regularly kept in touch with the Manager as the muscatel character could again happen in Autumn and Castleton makes some 3000kgs of pure autumn teas and the rest are sold as pre-autumn teas, the identity of a good autumn tea from this garden is that the cup has to be golden orange in liquor and the nose has to possess a mixture of pine and muscatel flavor.
I was called to the garden by Mr. Mukhia (Manager, Castleton Tea Garden) on the 31st of October `09, Mr. Mukhia is also a family friend of us so he arranged to keep samples of 5 different china type muscatel samples and a clonal tea sample for me, they arranged a tea tasting as soon as I reached the garden, he tried his best to sell me the clonal tea which was also good too but I am honestly sick and tired of clonal teas from Castleton this year as for wholesale purpose we have brought at least 800kgs of the clonals from them, as one can guess I was there for a good muscatel tea and not the “lights and florals” anymore. After tasting the 5 muscatel tea samples I selected the invoice DJ-357 tea which was a well sorted tea, had a great Muscat grape and piney nose, the liquor was very attractive and the cup is really full flavored muscatel type but sadly this invoice consists of very limited quantity of tea, since it contains only some 90kgs in the lot, so a tea lover has to rush for this tea before this gem of a tea gets out of stock!
Thursday, October 29, 2009
Thurbo clonal tips (ftgfop-1) EX-20 Autumn Flush Darjeeling Tea 2009:
As days passed on from 23rd October towards the 1st week of November the temperature in Darjeeling fell amazingly towards low and this was a right time for a Autumn Flush magic to happen in some of the estates in Darjeeling, so I had been flooded with samples from the Goodricke group in Darjeeling which owns gardens like Thurbo, Castleton, Margaret’s Hope, Barnesbeg and Badamtam , for the rest of the gardens I feel it will still take some time for a rich Autumn character but each time we received samples from Thurbo from the 2nd week of October we felt something is coming up meaning a character was getting pronounced each day we tried different samples from them, so right after the Diwali festival ( the festival of lights) I was called to the garden by Mr. J.D. Rai ( senior quality controller and Manager of the garden) as he claimed that something amazing had happened in his garden and guess what? Its the 1st batch of Autumn Flush 2009 that was rolling out from his garden, I simply could not resist the call and the very next morning I ran towards Thurbo tea garden through the beautiful valleys of Okayti and Gopaldhara tea estates, on my arrival I met another big Japanese tea wholesaler tasting some newly made Thurbo oolongs but I had no interest in fancy teas , I was just there in a desperate hunt for a classic Darjeeling tea and I feel I really got what I expected when the tea sample of Thurbo clonal tips ftgfop-1 Ex-20 was shown to me as I know my teas well and I saw all the characters in this tea that fits a perfect autumnal character, the tea looked totally dehydrated and dry which is the 1st impression of a good autumn tea, when sniffed on the dry leafs it gave out some rosy aroma and the cup was amazing as it had real pronounced hints of fresh orange peels and a very caramellic flavour was lying around it and above all the tea is simply mellow and there is no bitterness at all……I feel we had a very good start this Autumn!
Monday, October 19, 2009
Autumn Flush Darjeeling tea 2009:
I’m very glad that the autumn harvest has finally arrived and we are getting very busy again, I`ll definitely not say it’s a painful time that we are tasting about 30-40 samples every day and choosing 1-2 teas from various plantations, I would rather call this a full time adventure as autumn is a character and not a flush/harvest (though we call it a harvest) that lies between the monsoon harvest and the winter, actually after the 2nd Flush when the monsoons starts there is hardly any sunshine so the overall quality of the teas is dull (except some specialty teas), but after prolonged 3 months of rains when the rains stops the autumn season generally starts but not on teas, the autumn season for teas start only when the winter starts kicking in with a day and night temperature difference of 10-12 degree Celsius ,generally the leaf appearance of a pure autumn should be slightly purple and the basic taste should have a slight piney character on all china variety teas (well clonals may vary),as usual we have tried our best to bring you the best value for money teas, well being a professional exporter in bulk and consumer exports I’ll not ask you to search for a better collection of teas with others and let us know as it’s not your work to do so and I believe it’s my duty to sustain the quality and keep you happy as usual and of coarse I`ll definitely not comment on any one else’s tea as every garden has it’s own charm of distinctive flavor, and ultimately the consumer is the best judge as if a tea is not good it’s the mistake of the merchant and not the garden ( well that’s what I learned from my guru during my tea tasting days in kolkata,India), so I believe by saying a particular tea garden’s tea is good than the other garden’s tea is not being a “tea guru” but is extreme stupidity, well also one more thing I wanted to convey to all is that please look for the invoice nos.(DJ/LC/Ex) when you buy even 500g of a particular tea, as it’s your right to ask for it as the story of Invoice nos. goes like this; 1 full invoice mean a minimum of 100-105 kgs of single grade tea and this type of teas are marked in “DJ” and the numerical is added after these alphabets like DJ1,DJ2…. And so on with the next count of different batches, the LC/Ex is mostly given to the batches below the 100kg mark and the most important thing is that some teas are just remainings/left overs of different batches that may be lying at the corner of the tea garden factory, this type of teas fits no invoices so the garden often sell off these teas to merchants in cheaper prices and this never happens in early season harvest but mainly during mid season harvest and this type of teas often loose flavor with 20-25 days from the day you have purchased it, actually its loosing flavor every day, so being the top exporter merchants from Darjeeling (in quantity and quality) we believe that all our most valuable customers should know their tea’s invoice nos. (Let it be our big time bulk importers or consumers), all are valuable customers for us and I`ll never blog back by saying “we cannot give the invoice nos. as our wholesale customers complain about it”…. Well I guess this note has added a bit of spice to our autumnal selections, Have a great tea time!.........and yes, the minimum quantity to be ordered is still 49$ but we offer you a free shipping by FedEx (5 days delivery) to the following countries like: Egypt,Phillipines,Singapore,Thailand,China,Hongkong,Brunei,Cambodia,,Indonesia,,Malayasia,South Korea,Taiwan,Vietnam,Belgium,Denmark,France,Germany,Greenland,Italy,Netherland,Switzerland,
UK,,Canada,Mexico,USA and Japan…….Now who can offer a free shipping for 49$ including teas and a fast 5 days delivery by FedEx,I think if you look around then other companies are offering this Fedex Delivery offer for orders over 100$ and even more,so what are you waiting for? Come and Join our Autumn Darjeeling Tea 2009 tea Party!