Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Snowy Dawn and Nilgiri Tea

It snowed today; here's the view out my window as I drink my morning cup of tea:

There wasn't that much snow here; as I'm writing, my car is already shoveled out, pre-emptively, as I don't need to drive anywhere today.

Nilgiri Black Tea:

Nilgiri tea is just tea from the Nilgiri district of India, the next most well-known tea-producing region of India after Darjeeling and Assam. Today I drank my first cup ever of Nilgiri black tea, a loose tea that I picked up recently at Wegmans. I've actually had a Nilgiri tea before, but it was a green tea, from Upton Tea Imports: TN63 Nilgiri Green Tea from Korakundah Estate, which is both organic and fair-trade certified, very reasonably priced, and remarkably unique.

I often hear Nilgiri black tea described as being similar to Ceylon black tea. After drinking this cup, I agree with that analysis, at least in the case of this one particular tea. In contrast to the Nilgiri green that I tried, which was unusual, interesting, and unlike anything I had ever tried before, this tea was fairly mainstream, normal, "typical" for a black tea. This stands in contrast to Assam or Darjeeling black teas, both of which have their own peculiar aroma and flavor characteristics which somehow set them apart from the "typical black tea" profile, if there is such a thing.

For those of you who are more familiar with Nilgiris, how would you describe Nilgiri black tea?


  1. Ah you have touched base with my favorite black tea producing region!
    I adore Niligiri teas, specifically Nilgiri frost teas.
    They are the lightest of all black teas (to my palate) and, if processed in the orthodox fashion, are some of the most intriguing teas to cup and taste.
    They display mostly floral and honey like qualities, and are quite sweet for black teas. I enjoy the color, the delicacy, and the overall quality that I find to be a characteristic from the Nilgiri province.

  2. I'll look for a Nilgiri frost tea, I had not heard of that...I'm still learning so much!

  3. I've heard a lot about Nilgiri teas, but have tried very few. Recently, I was in a shop that had three or four. A few looked like very typical black tea, but the one I chose was so fresh (almost floral).

    It's called Thiashola 'Carrington' and I can't wait to find out more about this tea.

    A few tea drinkers I know who prefer green teas say that a Nilgiri is one of the few black teas they get excited about.