India is the second largest producer of tea and it wouldn’t be an overstatement to say that during the past century the beverage has seeped into our veins. Some of us cannot imagine a day without a few cups of tea. Just after waking up and till we wrap up our day, tea provides the comfort of home no matter where we are. Some like the sweet concoction of CTC teas spiced up with ginger, black pepper, and other herbs while some like a clean brew without any addition. And of course, there are the health enthusiasts who only steep maximum health benefits into their cups. Whatever the choice is, we unanimously love our cup of tea, there cannot be second thoughts about that.
But it isn’t only us, tea is the second most drunk beverage after water and it is estimated that each day approximately 2.16 billion cups are brewed and consumed globally. India is the second largest producer of tea and it produced 1,360 million kilograms in 2020. Not only quantity but India produces some of the most appreciated teas in the world and we want you to know everything about the most famous types of tea in India.
Although contributing less than 1% of total tea production, the mountainous region of Darjeeling produces some of the most appreciated types of tea in India. The majority of teas produced from Darjeeling are exported to the European markets and people globally await the delicately flavored and fragrant teas from Darjeeling. Starting as an experiment by the British to destabilize the monopoly held by Chinese teas, teas from Darjeeling started acquiring unparalleled fame shortly after its establishment. After much success at harvesting opulent teas, in the late 1800s, the eastern Himalayan region witnessed rapid mushrooming of tea estates. Today there are 87 tea estates producing orthodox teas that are often dubbed as the ‘Champagne of Teas’. Teas produced in the region include seasonal flushes, oolong, white, and green teas that render the most spectacular tea experience.
The most famous type of Assam tea is undoubtedly the English Breakfast. Known for its rich and malty flavours, the Assam cup is robust and intensely refreshing. Unlike Darjeeling, tea estates in Assam harvest the indigenous variety of tea plants that were first discovered in 1823. After a few years, in 1833 the first tea factory was established by the Government and the rest as we know is history.
A concoction of CTC tea and assorted Indian spices, Masala Chai is not a variety of tea per se but a way of drinking it. Famous throughout India, a cup of masala chai can be found in any nook or cranny. We welcome our guests and energize ourselves with a refreshingly aromatic cup of masala chai every now and then. There can be an infinite variety of masala chai throughout India depending on the spices used and we offer a solid range to suit every individual taste, find them here.
Laden with saffron, the gold of all spices, clove, cinnamon, and pristine green tea, Kahwa is a heavenly blend originating in Kashmir. The tea is said to have developed for the idiosyncratically cold climate of the region and is known to warm up the body from within. It is also considered an excellent immunity booster with other amazing health benefits. Usually, crushed nuts like walnuts and almonds are also used as garnishing.
Harvested and processed in the Niligiri range encompassing north-western Tamil Nadu, Southern Karnataka, and eastern Kerela, Nilgiri teas are quintessentially marked by the citrusy tinge often credited to the strong number of eucalyptus trees that dot the region. Although known for their range of black teas, the estates are expanding their portfolio by including green and white teas.
Although the aforementioned teas are the top types of tea in India, some teas which we have not included here deserve mentioning. One of them is the Tandoori Chai, the type made in baked earthen clay pots that give the tea a discernible nutty feel. The Butter Chai from the Himalayan region is also worth mentioning for its originality and exceptional taste.