First Flush Darjeelings
With its green hills, fresh clean air and temperate weather, Darjeeling is a PARADISE ON EARTH. The tea industry in Darjeeling is very dependent on the weather conditions and is affected by any change in the timely arrival of rains to the region. During winter, the tea gardens go through a period of dormancy due to cold weather. The tea bushes are pruned immediately before the onset of winter. A normal winter period is from December to February. The month of March brings the first batch of showers and the bushes produce a new growth of leafthe first flush. The telltale greenish look of this leaf is indicative of a good First Flush. The tea is delicate and light, very aromatic and, of course, has a superb flavor.
Second Flush Darjeelings
Second Flush season, in Darjeeling (NE India) produces some of the worlds finest, most sought-after teas. Before the arrival of the June monsoons, the Darjeeling District gets a brief second set of showers in May, which kicks off the second flush season. The first flush, typically, ends in late April, however this time frame can upset by severe weather. As a result, the second flush season may produce some excellent teas but at considerably higher than usual prices due to a much smaller availability. (If the leaves receive an excessive amount of moisture for instance, the general result will be a decrease in quality.)
Second flush Darjeeling teas are renowned for their Muscatel characteristicspossessing a well-developed flavor, sweet and smooth and with an absolutely remarkable taste. The most prized second flush are similar to vintage wines and command very, very high prices.
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