It’s time to spill the tea on Darjeeling.
You may have heard of it, seen it in the store, or enjoyed the taste – but there’s a lot more to this tea than you might think. Take a break from your busy day, and let’s walk through what Darjeeling tea is and what makes it one of the most sought-after teas in the world.
Darjeeling, the ‘Champagne of Teas’
Tea connoisseurs generally consider Darjeeling tea the finest in the world, even being titled the “Champagne of Teas.” It has a gentle, sweet taste with notes of citrus and flowers. While it is commonly known as a black tea, Darjeeling leaves are processed in many different ways to create black, green, white and oolong teas.
The secret to the tea’s uniquely delicate taste, smooth flavor and versatility is where it comes from: the Darjeeling district of West Bengal, India.
Harvested from the Mountains of India
Darjeelings are grown at the foothills of the Himalayan mountains, making it the highest elevation-produced tea in the world. It is made from the tea plant Camellia sinesis, which came to India from China in the mid-1800s.
Over time, Darjeeling tea became distinct from other varieties because of its mountainous environment. Differences in temperature ranges, oxygen content, and UV exposure produced a different leaf and new flavor in the cup.
Today, Darjeeling tea must be certified by the Tea Board of India to be considered legitimate. All the teas are 100% hand-cultivated, with the producers putting significant care, experience and expertise into cultivating and manufacturing these premium teas. As a result, Darjeeling teas are relatively rare and prized among tea drinkers.
Providing Health Benefits for Generations
As with many tea varieties, Darjeeling tea is associated with a wide range of health benefits. This is primarily because it contains polyphenols, or plant compounds, that fight inflammation and chronic disease.
A healthy caffeine alternative, tea’s health benefits include boosting heart health, helping with weight loss, balancing blood sugar levels, and calming the mind and body. Darjeeling tea can even prevent cavities and support bone strength, as it is particularly high in magnesium.
Because Darjeeling tea is ethically produced and sourced, you can also rest assure that your cup of tea is free of preservatives or mystery ingredients.
Your Quick Guide to Enjoying Darjeeling Tea
Ready to experience the taste and health benefits of Darjeeling tea?
Before you buy it online or off the grocery shelf, make sure to first research the brand selling it. Since the amount of Darjeeling tea is limited, there are counterfeits on the market that don’t have the distinct flavor that makes Darjeelings so special.
Once you have the tea, you can brew the perfect cup by:
- Boiling water and pouring 8-12 oz. into a mug
- Adding a tea bag (if you have tea leaves, put in a strainer first and then pour the water over)
- Steep for 3 to 5 minutes, depending on preferred strength
- Add sugar, honey or cream if desired
If you love refreshingly cold tea or want something to enjoy on the go, new options are available for organic tea products blended to perfection and ready to drink.
We hope you enjoy a wonderful Darjeeling tea journey!