Darjeeling tea is a black tea grown in the Darjeeling district in West Bengal, India. Darjeeling tea is also called the “champagne of teas” since it is considered to be the finest tea in the world. At first, Darjeeling tea was available only as black tea but later on, Darjeeling white tea and Darjeeling oolong tea have been produced.
Darjeeling tea is made from the small-leaved Chinese plant Camellia Sinensis, unlike most Indian teas that are made from the large-leaved Assam plant. The reason is that, in the early 1840’s, a civil surgeon of the Indian Medical Service named Dr. Campbell was transferred to Darjeeling and used seeds from China to experiment tea planting.
How to brew Darjeeling tea
Many tea drinkers complain about not getting the right flavor when drinking the Indian Darjeeling tea. The main reason why this happens is because the preparation of Darjeeling tea is a delicate process and ignoring even only one step can cause the loss of an authentic flavor and taste. Here are some important rules in brewing Darjeeling tea:
- Use water that is free of chlorine, iron, salt and other type of impurities, because otherwise it can completely ruin the taste orDarjeeling tea.
- An important detail that most people ignore is using the right teapot. That is why it is recommended the use of China porcelain teapots and cups.
- For proper infusion, the Darjeeling tea leaves should be placed into the pot and then pour hot water on it.
- And last, Darjeeling tea connoisseurs advise not to put any kind of milk, honey or sugar in it since they change the aromatic flavor of Darjeeling tea. Also, milk reduces the benefits of this tea.
Here are the brewing instructions:
First of all, you have to boil the water. Once the water is boiled, let it cool for about 5 minutes because if it is too hot, the Darjeeling tea leaves might burn and you will lose the flavor. Then add one teaspoon of Darjeeling leaves per 8 oz cup in the teapot and slowly pour water over the leaves. Let it steep between 2-5 minutes, but be careful! Steeping it for more than 5 minutes, may lead to a bitter cup of tea! Try to drink it without any kind of sweetener or milk to really enjoy the flavor.
Darjeeling Tea benefits
Darjeeling tea has many benefits because of the high antioxidant content that combat free radicals and diseases. Also Darjeeling tea contains vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin C, Vitamin K, calcium, magnesium and potassium, according the University of Arizona.
- Darjeeling tea strengthens your immune system, lowers cholesterol, fights dental plaque and maintains a healthy heart.
- Provides relaxation because of the L-theanine (amino – acid) that reduces mental and physical stress. That is why, people who suffer from depression or have anxiety attacks are advised to drink Darjeeling tea since it offers a feeling of well-being.
- It gives you energy, even though it has a small amount of caffeine. The L-theanine amino- acid softens caffeine’s speedy and uneven effects so that a person who is consuming Darjeeling tea feels relaxed and energized in the same time.
- Darjeeling tea contains antioxidants called flavonoids that protect cells from free radical damage.
- Reduces stroke risks and improves the function of blood vessels.
Darjeeling tea side effects
Since Darjeeling tea is a black tea, it has almost the same side effects as the simple black tea:
- People with anemia and iron deficiency should avoid drinking Darjeeling black tea.
- In cases of diabetes, even though Darjeeling tea’s caffeine content is softened by the the L-theanine amino – acid, still might affect blood sugar.
- People who present calcium deficit shouldn’t drink black tea, including Darjeeling tea, since it could produce dizziness and the sensation of fainting.
- Also, pregnant women are advised not to drink black tea.
Darjeeling tea is perfect for any time of the day and it is worldwide acknowledged as being to teas what champagne is to wine. It has a unique flavor that cannot be replicated anywhere else in the world!