Yet another episode from the on-going saga of the Lübeck haul.
The appeal of this tea was quite simple – I’ve enjoyed the other Nepalese teas (see here and here for details) I’ve encountered, and so when the opportunity arose to add these leaves to the tally when Mrs. Teaist was taking care of business at Lübecker Tee Kontor I jumped at the chance.
Finding information about this tea has proved to be a bit tricky. The information on the packaging told me that this was a first flush, but not a great deal more.
The Lübecker Tee Kontor website no longer seemed to list the tea, so I did a spot of Googling.
Interestingly enough, that led me to one of my favourite on-line tea shops, What-cha, who sell what I’m going to assume is the same tea. I do believe Alastair of What-cha reads this blog from time to time, so if he does see this post maybe he could confirm this. The packaging did also list what appears to be a batch number, “G17” – What-cha list a similar number under the term “Invoice“, so I’m guessing that might be able to nail this tea’s specifics down with a bit more precision.
Still, what I do know for sure is that the tea is a product of the Guranse Tea Estate, which is located at Hile in Dhankuta district, Nepal.
As interesting as all that detective work was, it was time to let leaves and hot water get to know each other.
As I tend to do with teas from that part of the world and of this general type, I decided to go with a broadly Western approach.
|Water Used:||Filtered tap water|
|Weight of dry leaf:||3 grams|
|Steeping vessel:||200 ml ceramic teapot|
|No. & duration:||3 infusions of 1½, 2, and 3 minutes duration.|
Before I took a sip of the first infusion, I had a good old sniff of the wet leaf. It smelled of flowers and biscuits, which seemed like an indication of goods things ahead.
Taste-wise there was quite a bit going on in the cup. I picked up flowers, bergamot, and a faint strawberry note, all coming across, over, and under each other at the same time, jostling for pole position on my palate.
Like with other Nepalese teas, there are obvious comparisons that can be drawn with those very well known teas that come from over the border in Darjeeling, and from that perspective, this tea has a definite astringent nip.
The second steeping had the same flavour balance as the first, just a reduced volume, so to speak, a trend that continued with the third round, which although perfectly drinkable was nevertheless clearly game over for these leaves.
Again, I may be on the wrong track here, but I’m starting to get a sense that the teas from Nepal have a bit more “oomph” when compared to their close relatives in Darjeeling, despite being just as floral and fruity. In any case, this tea is an interesting one in its own right, regardless of how it stacks up against its more famous neighbours.
Future plans for this tea include playing one of those “I wonder what happens if…” hunches, and steeping the leaves at a slightly cooler temperature, say, 85°C, maybe even as low as 80°C. I just have this gut feeling that there might be something else hiding away here that might be coaxed out with a slight drop in water temperature.
Good stuff, this. Recommended.