(Estate Black Tea)
Country of Origin: Sikkim
Shipping Port: Calcutta
Grade FTGFOP (Flavory Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe)
Altitude: up to 7000 ft. above sea level.
Cup Characteristics: Classic muscatel character but with delicious hints of peach and almond.
Infusion: Tending coppery
Ingredients: Luxury black tea
The name Sikkim is derived from an ancient Sanskrit word meaning mountainous land and was coined by Nepalese settlers hundreds of years ago. The province, which spreads out below Mount Khanchendzonga in the Eastern Himalayas, is arguably one of the most beautiful tea growing regions of the world. This mountain, at 8540 meters above sea level, soars into the heavens and as such is revered by the Sikkimese as a protective deity. Sikkim is also home to thunderously flowing rivers, dense forests, and lush valleys. It is in amongst these valleys that the Nepalese, besides giving a name to the place, introduced a system of terraced cultivation by cutting fields into the mountainsides like great giant steps. It is on these terraces that you will find Temi tea estate, considered by many to be the pride of Sikkim.
Temi Estate was first planted in 1969. The estate has roughly 435 acres under tea with a labor force of about 406, and management staff of 43. Ever since it was first planted, the estate has adhered to rigorous levels of managerial excellence. These standards cover all aspects of operations from the education of workers? children to the quality of the plucked leaf. Standards are so high in fact that Temi received The Tea Board of India?s All India Quality Award in 1994 and 1995. Since that time, visits to the estate have shown that this rigorous adherence to quality has not slipped.
The quality of the finished product is evident from the first sip of a cup of Temi. Probably owing to their similar mountain climates, Temis share the same distinctive muscatel notes of high quality Darjeelings. Pay close attention to the infusion however and certain differences can be noted. Alongside the muscatel, distinct undertones of sweet peach are layered with hints of bitter almond ? nuances that give the tea a slightly sweeter character than many Darjeelings. A splash of milk will open this tea amazingly, and will add depth to its light, playful character - a fabulous mountain tea.
Hot tea brewing method: Bring freshly drawn cold water to a rolling boil. Place 1 teaspoon of tea for each cup into the teapot. Pour the boiling water into the teapot. Cover and let steep for 3-7 minutes according to taste (the longer the steeping time the stronger the tea). Even though milk and a dash of sugar help capture the malty character of this tea, it is perfectly acceptable to consume this tea ?straight-up?