The temperature here in Sydney is 32 degrees, and winter seems like a somewhat distant memory, although not even three weeks ago I had the oil heater on when studying late at night in the back room. All of my winter teas – my Russian Caravans, my Lapsang Souchongs, my black teas flavoured with spices and chocolate or caramel – have been relegated to the back of the tea cupboard and I’ve dug out what remains of my teas from last Spring.

I thought a light Darjeeling tea would hit the spot. This one isn’t too bad at all. It’s very light on the nose and palate at first – perhaps too light – with a very faint muskiness and astringency, but it gradually takes on a more pronounced, fruity flavour and aroma. The astringency becomes more pronounced as well, but not in a bad way.

I think I prefer this to the Castleton Estate that I tried a week or two ago. There is no information about where the tea is sourced from, and taking into account the cost, I’m assuming it’s a blend of various 1st Flushes, but lighter than the Twinings Vintage Darjeeling. Not sure how it would compare to the single estate Darjeelings I have in my cupboard as it has been a while since I have had them. I generally prefer the 1st to the 2nd Flush, but anyone that prefers the latter may find it to be too light, but for me this is a good vernal tea.

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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I always find intros difficult to write. Where to start . . . Sydney-sider working in insurance who has lived in London for ten years but returned to Australia in 2012. Despite coffee being the drink of choice in Oz, I come from a family of dedicated tea drinkers. Although I enjoy all teas – both black and green teas, either flavoured/scented or pure single-estate teas – I have a special fondness for Earl Grey and Ceylon teas.

With a cup of tea in hand, I love settling down with a DVD. I love cult films, anything visceral and slightly surreal – Shaw Brothers Kung Fu, Giallos, Spaghetti Westerns, Eurohorror, Hammer Horror, etc. If I’m not watching a film, I’ll be watching classic British TV like 70s Doctor Who, Blake’s 7, The Avengers, Danger Man as well as Prisoner: Cell Block H and the occasional Showtime or HBO series.

As much as I enjoy reading or art, I just don’t have the time for either these days.

My current favourites:

The Tea Centre:
Ceylon Pattiagalla
Darljeeling Selimbong FTGFOP1 1st Flush
Japanese Lime
Orange Blossom Pai Mu Tan

Oolong Fresh

Earl Grey De Luxe – Madame Flavour
Gunpowder – Temple of Heaven



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