First Flush Darjeeling (Organic)

Tea type
Black Tea
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Astringent, Drying, Mango, Muscatel, Sweet, Tart, White Grapes
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Edit tea info Last updated by sophistre
Average preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 45 sec 13 oz / 387 ml

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From The Tao of Tea

Native Name: Darjeeling
Origin: Kurseong District, Northeast India

Plucking Season: Early Spring

Introduction: This tea is grown in the Kurseong district (about an hour drive from the town of Darjeeling), at a Certified Organic tea garden. Due to its location and age of the plants, the garden typically produces very robust, flowery teas. The term “first flush”, refers to the first plucking season of the year which is March to mid-April. Teas from the first flush are generally more fragrant and lighter than the following “second” flush. Within the “first flush” tea gardens will generally produce many batches, as the tea pickers work daily to cover the vast garden. Each batch is different (due to the mix of leaves), and unique in its flavor. The batch size can vary from 60 kgs to 200 kgs (it takes about 3-4 pounds of raw leaf plucked to make 1 pound of finished leaf). The garden areas plucked first are generally those where plants have new leaf growth. Darjeeling tea gardens also have several varietals (native and clonals) as well as diversity in plant age. We work with a particular garden to select leaf from a consistent varietal and age for our first flush Darjeeling. Also, as a guideline for the processing, we prefer the First flush to be lower oxidized (thus maintaining a greener leaf profile) and to comprise more tips, giving it a complex texture and bounce to flavor.

Flavor Profile: Distinct muscatel flavor and sweetness.

Ingredients: 100% Organic Black Tea Leaves
Certified Organic by: Quality Assurance International (QAI)

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11 Tasting Notes

158 tasting notes

I know I’ve had this one before, but for whatever reason, I didn’t log it. I didn’t even have it in my cupboard. Lazy sophistre!

Darjeelings are probably the type of black tea that I should focus on next in terms of training my palate. I can compare Assams and Keemuns without difficulty, Lapsangs are no trouble, but my memories of Darjeeling teas usually wind up blending together, such that I have a difficult time developing clear favorites. Given how much I’ve liked the muscat notes in some other teas, though, I think we should get along splendidly.

The cup brews to a lovely bright golden color that reminds me of hay in the sun…which is not a bad thing, as the flavor sort of makes me think of sweet hay with a very mild muscat, not strong enough to be tart the way it sometimes can be. When the cup was hotter (usually the time when the muscat tartness is strongest) it seemed almost like a citrusy note, but has since smoothed out immensely. Every now and then I get a glimpse of something almost spicy, but it’s very faint. It’s a very smooth cup, not astringent at all, and quite light. A nice way to inform my stomach that we’re awake and about to begin the Assamica assault so that we can get the caffeine bomb we need in order to write proper English sentences!

Just guesstimating on my steep time, today. 2 teaspoons in 16oz.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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19 tasting notes

Second steep

Smells and tastes are the same as the first steep but significantly less pronounced.

Is a bit too weak for a second steep, needs to be mixed with another tea to survive multiple cups.

185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 45 sec

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42 tasting notes

Drinking this fragrant tea again and I have to say that I stand by what I said initially. Very nice…

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18 tasting notes

This is the first tea I have had that exhibits the “muscatiel” flavor profile and it’s very delightful. This tea is very fine indeed, but very delicate. The recommended 185F is a good limit. It lasts for at least 4 steepings in my little 300ml Hario glass pot, with the flavor getting less pronounced but still present. Beyond 4 steepings it’s getting a little extra to keep brewing it.

It’s very sensitive to being overbrewed, because it is so dry and astringent. I would also not overleaf like I did today, it doesn’t really benefit from it, the best flavors in this tea are the subtle ones.

If you are forgetful like me overbrew it like I did on some of the later steepings, add sweetener, but don’t do this tea dirty by adding milk. It doesn’t play well with honey, that will wash it out and make it insipid, but it goes well with a light brown sugar.

This is a weird tea to have as an everyday tea, but it’s a flavor sensation.

Flavors: Astringent, Drying, Mango, Muscatel, Sweet, Tart, White Grapes

185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML

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20 tasting notes

Good amount of tea for the price. Tastes like a First Flush should but on the weak side , a pretty standard daily drinker Darjeeling otherwise .

Flavors: Muscatel, Sweet

1 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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31 tasting notes

YUM! Brightens up my afternoon =)

180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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115 tasting notes

Started my day with this #tea with that distinct muscatel flavoring.

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