loose leaf tea


Darjeeling is located high up in the foothills of the Indian Himalayas and tea was introduced to the area by the British in 1856. This region produces some of the finest teas in the world since the conditions there are perfect: High altitude, well-drained soils, temperatures that range from 8 to 25 C and enough cloud cover to protect the young leaves from drying out or burning.

Unlike the famous teas of Assam which are indigenous to the region, Darjeeling was planted with Chinese Camelia Sinensis so the flavours of the teas produced in these two regions are vastly different.

Darjeeling is often referred to as the “Champagne of Teas,” with musky-sweet tasting notes similar to Muscat wine. But it can also have delicate vegetal, mossy, fruity, and citrus flavours and sometimes peach and florals.

While classified as a black tea, Darjeeling teas are almost always less oxidized than a typical black tea so that they can look more like an oolong semi-fermented tea and in some cases they look quite green in their preparation. The unique flavour of Darjeeling comes from Chinese tea genetics mixing with Indian terroir along with the intricacies of harvesting and processing. It’s lighter and less astringent than most black tea, but more layered and complex than most greens. There is two harvests in Darjeeling – first and second flush and each brings about its own flavours. The first flush teas are often delicate but display beautiful sweetness and astringency with fragrant flavours. The second flush brings teas with bigger, deeper flavours with winey and fruit-like nuances.

For the Storm Hand-Crafted range we have selected an organic Darjeeling second flush from the Makaibari Tea Garden. It is one of the oldest gardens having been established in 1859. Located in Kurseong subdivision, in Darjeeling District, Makaibari provides work for more than 1,500 people from seven local villages. The fourth generation owners of Makaibari care deeply about the people who work in their tea gardens and provide schools, libraries, computer training centres and adequate housing. This caring approach is given over to the land as well since 70% of it remains under forest where wildlife is protected.

The leaf is a black FTGFOP. (Fine, tippy, golden, flowery orange pekoe).

When brewing loose leaves in a teapot use 1 teaspoon of leaf per person with 250mls of water per person.