Good morning, dear tea friends! The weather has turned more seasonable and I gaze out my window on a cool, overcast morning. I slip on my warm fleece and sit down to sip my tea. I’m back to my beloved first flush Darjeelings, this selection from the Avongrove Estate.
Avongrove, meaning “nest of birds,” overlooks the Balasun River in the Rangbhang Valley in Darjeeling district, India. With elevations of 2,200-5,700 in the foothills of the Himalayas, this organically certified estate has the perfect location and climate to produce wonderful Darjeeling teas. From their website:
Five hundred workers live on the estate with their families, in small houses decorated with orange trees and flowers. As our manager walks by, the old hands smile and their children zip past him on improvised skateboards. Life is simple, nobody disturbs the hills and we always welcome our frequent bird visitors drawn to Avongrove as an organic estate, free from chemicals. For our other visitors, also always welcome; sipping a cup of tea, relaxed on the hilltop, enjoying a misty, magical dusk is indeed satisfying.
I steeped the leaves for 3 minutes in water a smidgen under boiling point (212F).
The finely plucked leaves produce a golden liquor that has a fresh vegetal fragrance with a whisper of flowers. Mmmm, so fresh.
There’s a crispness to the mouth feel that wakes up my palate for the flavor notes to come. Floral. Tropical fruit. A lingering sweetness. Another enjoyable first flush!
What’s in your cup today?
“I am seeking, I am striving, I am in it with all my heart.”
~Vincent Van Gogh