Second Flush Darjeeling

Type of Tea: Whole Leaf Black Tea

Tea Estate/Region: Happy Valley Tea Garden

Country: India

Fair Trade Certified: Yes

Organic Certified: Yes

Picked from late May to June, this Darjeeling features a nut-brown cup with a rich burst of flavor and a well-balanced touch of muscatel.

Darjeeling is a region in West Bengal India.  Darjeeling tea was first grown there by Dr. Campbell, a civil surgeon who brought the Chinese strain of the tea plant to the region in the 1800’s and began experimenting. Darjeeling is often described as a black tea, but at ninety percent oxidation it is technically closer to an Oolong.  It is harvested 3 times during the growing season, once during the first flush, between the first and second flush, and finally during the second flush of growing. Darjeeling is known for its unique flavor.  The word tea experts use to describe this is “muscatel.”  Darjeeling is prized above other black teas because of this distinct quality.  Because the tea is highly valued, there are strict conditions placed on the growers of Darjeeling Tea.  It can only be grown in the Darjeeling region, and only on certain growing estates. This is to protect the tea from being misrepresented in the tea market.  Darjeeling tea is so coveted that some growers try to pass off simple black tea as Darjeeling.  This exclusivity is similar to the standards placed upon champagne, hence the name Darjeeling Champagne. Second Flush Darjeeling is harvested in June, while First Flush Darjeeling is typically harvested in April. The more mature leaves yield a brew that is more aromatic, bolder and fuller flavored.