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Margaret’s Hope Darjeeling Black Loose Leaf Tea – 2nd Flush TGFOP is from India’s Himalayan foothills. This is a medium-sized whole leaf with lots of tips. Delicately astringent, bright cup with distinctive muscatel character. Hints of currant give an almost wine-like taste to this fine tea.
Nestled in the hills below the soaring majesty of the Himalayas is the Darjeeling growing area of Northeast India. Darjeeling actually means “place of lightning” and describes well the bolts of lightning that accompany great monsoons that wash over the landscape every year. With elevations up to 7,000 feet above sea level, the combination of coolness and moisture produce a much lighter cup than neighboring region Assam.
During the 1930’s Margaret Hope Tea Estate was owned by Mr. Bagdon from London. His youngest daughter, Margaret, visited with him on one trip and fell in love with the garden, the people, and the Darjeeling area. She had hoped to return when older and manage the estate for her father. Tragically, she fell ill on board ship during the long sail back to England and died shortly after. The estate was named in her memory.
The tea bushes at Margaret’s Hope are mostly from the Chinese variety of Camellia sinensis and grown at altitudes of 6 – 7,000 ft above sea level. Growth is much slower in the cool weather at this altitude, producing limited crops. This leaf, almost green in appearance with a superb fragrance, is a second flush picked during May and June. This flush produces an incomparable tea quality; some would describe it as nutty, others likening the taste to black currants or a fine Muscat grape.
However you describe this black tea, the proof is in the tasting. You will find a bright cup with delicate astringency, which is best appreciated ‘straight up. When brewing any Darjeeling, we find 3 minutes long enough for the first infusion, though you may wish to infuse longer for a more astringent and deeper tasting tea. This tea is the very embodiment of “Life is too short to drink bad black tea.”
To enjoy our Margaret’s Hope Darjeeling at its absolute best, serve in a pure white cup. Please refrain from adding milk and sugar even though this may be your preference! 20 to 25 cups of tea can be made from 2 oz of loose leaf tea.
Brewing Instructions for Margaret’s Hope Darjeeling Black Tea
Steep this tea multiple times. Loose-leaf teas have far more flavor than traditional tea bags due to the superior quality and freshness. Tea strength is a personal decision, so please experiment to determine your preferences.
Use boiling water and allow your Margaret’s Hope Darjeeling to steep as little as 3 minutes or as much as 6 minutes. For each of the following steeps, use boiling water and double the steep time. Darjeeling Tea can be steeped at least 3 times and, depending on the steep times, as many as 5 times. Also, consider blending the first steep with the following steeps to balance the tea; if you do not want to drink all the tea, store it in the fridge for wonderful iced tea.
Store in a dry place.