Moving right along through the samples of high quality orthodox teas from Nepal, I have come to the SFTGFOP1 2nd Flush 2014 tea from Kanyam Tea Estate. This sample was provided by Surajmukhi Tea.
The Kanyam Tea Estate is located in the Ilam District of eastern Nepal, a short two kilometers from the Darjeeling district of India.The estate consists of a total area of 240 hectares (about 593 acres), of which 200 hectares (494 acres) is dedicated to tea cultivation. The tea estate itself is situated at an altitude around 6,000 feet (1,828 meters) above sea level. The Kanyam Tea Factory is situated at an altitude of about 5,500 feet (1,675 meters) above sea level. The Kanyam Tea Factory produces an annual output of about 125,000 kilograms of high quality orthodox teas.
The sample packet has been opened, and a candy-sweet aroma is filling the air. Let the journey begin…
The dry leaves vary in color from light green to light brown to reddish-purple to black, with a generous amount of silver tips covered in fine hairs. The leaves are medium to large fragments, and are rolled. The pluck is two leaves and a bud. There are a few bare stems in the mix. The leaves have a dry, rigid texture. The aroma is very sweet, with scents of ripe red grapes, ripe cherries, sugar candy, autumn leaves, flowers, and potpourri. As usual for the high quality orthodox teas from Nepal, the aroma of this Kanyam SFTGFOP1 is highly impressive.
Three grams of dry leaves were placed in a five ounce (150 ml) porcelain infusion cup. Purified water was heated to 205°F (96°C). The leaves were infused for 4:00 minutes.
My suggestion for at preparation is to use three grams of dry leaves for every six to eight ounces (180 to 240 ml) of water to be used. Heat water to 195°F (90°C). Steep the leaves for 3:30 minutes. Expect two quality infusions from the same serving of leaves. Add an additional minute to the steep time for the second infusion, for a total of 4:30 minutes. The second infusion will be lighter in character than the first.
The first infusion produced a liquor with a bright orange-red color, clear and transparent. The aroma has scents of grapes, grapefruit, raw cacao, roses, autumn leaves, and cinnamon. The body is medium-full, with a lively texture, and a noticeably uplifting energy. The taste has notes of grapes, grapefruit, roses, light malt, raw cacao, and cinnamon. There is a very mild astringency, and a pleasant bitterness that balances well with the sweet tastes. The aftertaste is sweet and lightly spicy (cinnamon), which translates into a sweetly floral essence left on the breath. From color to taste, this infusion is just as impressive as the aroma of the dry leaves.
The infused leaves have a fairly uniform copper brown color, some leaning to greenish-brown. The leaves are all medium to large fragments. There are no whole and unbroken leaves, but plenty of whole buds, and a few bare stems in the mix. The leaves have a smooth and slightly leathery texture. The aroma maintains the sweet scents of grapes, cherries, candy, flowers, and potpourri.
It is hard to imagine that the popularity of high quality orthodox teas from Nepal is not on the verge of skyrocketing. I understand there are some socio-political roadblocks that are not allowing the industry to fully blossom, and I truly hope that the government, tea industry leaders, and the workers of Nepal can find a mutually beneficial solution to these problems. The high quality products are certainly there! The Kanyam SFTGFOP1 2nd Flush 2014 is another shining example of the beautiful and highly impressive tea products being produced in eastern Nepal. The aroma of the dry leaves has certainly left a lasting mark in my memory. The bright color of the liquor, the aroma, the lively texture, the uplifting energy, and the beautifully balanced taste certainly sealed a highly favorable opinion of this tea. I am starting to see the bottom of this package of Nepal tea samples, and I am a little depressed by that fact. These teas are incredible! If you haven’t tried a tea from Nepal, and I mean any high quality orthodox tea, then you need to find one and buy it now! Shameless Plug Alert: The Tea Journeyman Shop currently offers the Kanchenjunga Green Tea from Kanchanjangha Tea Estate! Why not start your Nepal tea experience with my favorite green tea from this emerging market!
Thanks to Ankit Lochan from Surajmukhi Tea for providing these incredible samples of tea from Kanyam Tea Estate. Cheers!