Happy Earth Tea
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Recent Tasting Notes
This tea brews up very light. The leaves don’t really look “black” – they look like a green or perhaps even a white tea because of the silvery tips. But, Happy Earth categorizes this as a black Darjeeling, so I’ll go with it.
And it doesn’t really matter to me, because I LOVE THIS TEA! It’s an amazing first flush. Notes of flower and lime. It’s bright, light, and crisp. Sweet and vibrant with a very fresh taste to it.
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2014/05/19/organic-singbulli-darjeeling-black-tea-first-flush-2014-from-happy-earth-tea/
Crisp … invigorating! A really lovely first flush Darjeeling. My preference for Darjeeling teas tend to be second flush because I love the muscatel of the second flush, but I’ve really enjoyed quite a few stunning first flush teas this year. This is one of them.
Smooth, sweet flavor with notes of fruit and flower. Not a strong muscatel (again, that’s not expected from a first flush), but this does have a slight wine-like quality to it that I enjoyed.
Nice round flavor. Sweet!
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2014/05/11/organic-sungma-darjeeling-black-tea-first-flush-2014-from-happy-earth-tea/
Good evening Steepster…
I haven’t been feeling too perky today, just down in the dumps I guess. Of course the answer to that problem is to drink a nice cuppa!
I bought a sampler pack from Happy Earth Tea that has all the 2014 FF darjeelings in it. I think I’ll be happy with this decision as I didn’t need more darjeelings but I really wanted to try the current crop.
This tea steeps up with a dark yellow liquor. It definitely has a lot of natural sweetness that comes shining through in the cup. I am getting wonderful fruity flavors and a floral aroma. Their description says peach and vanilla but I was thinking mango too. Hmm, I don’t like this quite as much as the 2012 Risheehat so far, but maybe I will need to experiment a bit with the steeping temp on this one. It is a very nice afternoon tea with a bit of astringency. This was good with a tiny bit of cane sugar and is helping me to feel a bit calmer. :)
Flavors: Flowers, Mango, Peach
I’ve been longing to try Darjeeling Teas from Happy Earth Tea for some time. Happy Earth Tea which was founded by Niraj Lama and his wife Mary Boland in 2011 is located in Rochester, New York. Niraj is originally from Darjeeling and making most of his background to source great teas from Darjeeling, India.
A colleague of mine was kind enough to get me some tea while he was visiting the US last week. I ordered some breakfast tea which is blend of Assam and Yunnan black teas and a sample set of their Darjeeling First and Second flush teas which include their four Darjeeling teas. It was hard to decide which one to review for this post yet finally I made my choice and went for Arya Black First Flush.
First of all you can not go wrong with Darjeeling teas especially if it’s first flush. Yet there are even better ones and this one from Arya Estate is sure one of them. If you do not know much about tea, you can easily confuse it with green tea because of its leaf appearance.
It’s so rich in aroma and flavor, you can feel Darjeeling in it even your eyes closed. It’s exactly what you’d expect from Darjeeling tea. Enjoy your tea!
I LOVE this Darjeeling. It’s one of the finest Darjeeling teas I’ve yet to taste. This is the flavor that I think of when I hear the word “Darjeeling.” This is it! As close to perfect as a Darjeeling can get, in my opinion.
A beautiful muscatel. Sweet, floral, fruity, wine-like finish. Delightful.
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2014/02/10/organic-arya-ruby-darjeeling-black-tea-second-flush-happy-earth-tea/
I like this one quite a bit. It’s very fruity. I’m mostly getting dried apricot, which really comes out in the aftertaste. There’s just a hint of something floral lurking in the background, and exactly enough astringency to keep things interesting. It’s complex, full bodied, and an all-around enjoyable tea.
To be honest, I have a hard time picking out the differences among Darjeelings—I can tell a first flush from a second, but beyond that I’m lost. I don’t get the whole muscatel thing either; neither this nor any other Darjeeling I’ve tried strikes me as particularly wine-like (although I admit I’m not much of a wine drinker) and I only occasionally get grape notes. I do tend to like second flushes quite a bit, though, and this one’s no exception. Thanks to Nicole_Martin for the sample!
This first flush had a really nice balance between fruit and flowery notes. It tasted crisp and clean. There is an ever-so-slight muscatel note to it. I’m betting that this particular estate has a really amazing second flush if I can taste the muscatel in the first flush.
A really nice tea. I’m looking forward to the 2014 harvests!
This is a really nice Darjeeling. It’s quite fruity—grape and dried apricot, mainly—and not very floral. I’m not picking up on the nuttiness mentioned in the description, and I wouldn’t say it’s sweet either. It’s just as astringent as a good Darjeeling should be, and it’s not too heavy on the grassy, herbal kinds of notes that I often find overwhelming. I tried the 2012 Sungma First Flush from Happy Earth and didn’t much care for it, but I tend to prefer second flush Darjeelings so it’s no surprise that this one’s more to my liking. Thanks for the sample, Nicole_Martin!
Thank you TeaEqualsBliss for sending me this one. Pleasant and earthy. A really nice Darjeeling first flush. I tend to prefer second flush when it comes to Darjeeling, but this is a really pleasing Darjeeling.
Sweet fruit notes (mild) with a nice floral overtone. Not a lot of muscatel to this one although I wasn’t expecting it to be overly muscatel-ish because it’s a first flush.
Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/09/24/organic-puttabong-stgfop1-first-flush-darjeeling-from-happy-earth-tea/
A crisp, classic first flush darjeeling taste. It is an invigorating yet light and clean tasting tea. It almost sparkles on the palate.
This is the kind of tea that I like to drink when I need a little “lift” … something to perk me up when I’m feeling down because it’s very uplifting and invigorating, but, without the heaviness that other invigorating teas sometimes have.
Earthy, slightly vegetative, not so fruity as some Darjeeling teas. More of an indistinct fruit tone to this.
A really enjoyable cuppa. Here’s my full-length review: http://sororiteasisters.com/2013/06/13/organic-sungma-first-flush-darjeeling-tea-from-happy-earth-tea/
A flavorful Darjeeling – a nice muscatel note. Sweet, fruity, nutty, and earthy. A very enjoyable cuppa! I even noticed hints of malt that made me question if I was tasting a Darjeeling! This definitely seems like a stronger, more robust Darjeeling … not the sparkling, crisp lighter Darjeeling that I’ve come to expect when I drink a Darjeeling.
But don’t mistake that for me not enjoying this because I really enjoyed it – especially because it was really different. A very nice tea.
I’m finishing off this sample now, and, despite having paid no attention to timing or leaf/water ratio, I’m enjoying it quite a bit more than I did yesterday. I’m definitely using less leaf and more water this team, and I let the tea steep for much longer (like over ten minutes…). Also, cooler water. It’s still extremely astringent – more so, actually – but that strange herbal aftertaste is almost gone and I’m getting more of what I consider a standard Darjeeling profile. Still not my favorite, but much more enjoyable.
This is very dry and grassy, even by Darjeeling standards. It’s quite astringent as well. There’s an unexpected (to me, anyway) herbal aroma I’m not liking very much. I’m glad to have had the chance to try this and will certainly be finishing my cup, but it’s definitely not my favorite Darjeeling. This is another sample from Nicole Martin – or at least I think this is what it was!
Thanks to TeaEqualsBliss for sending me some of this tea. It’s a really nice Darjeeling. A really nice first flush. Malty and sweet, not so much of a muscatel note but that’s kind of expected with a first flush. There are some nice fruity notes that border on a ‘grape-like’ taste but it’s not quite that of a muscat grape … more of a sweet taste that falls somewhere in between apple and grape, with notes of a citrus-y briskness.
Nice earthy tones, nutty notes and a hint of spice too. A distinct masculine tea.
Backpedaling a bit
I actually had (and finished) this a few weeks back. The first time I had it, though, was in the summer. I even included it in a story I wrote. That good. Very up-to-par with the other Darjeelings of 2012.
Unlike the other Darj’s, though, it had a rather unique trait – putting up with a forever-steep of about ten minutes. Seriously, I brewed a pin of it, left to take a shower, then revisited it. The brew didn’t bitter at all; it merely strengthened. As for taste? It was a bolder profile than before, heavier on he muscatel with an added presence of smoke and malt.
It even inspired its own metaphor in a write up (here: http://steepstories.com/2013/01/31/lowbrow-low-expectations-and-lowland-darjeeling/).
Whoever said lowland Darjeelings aren’t as good as the higher-elevation ones didn’t know what they were talking about.
Thank you to TeaEqualsBliss for sending me some of this.
I had chili earlier, and I make a spicy chili. And now my tummy is starting to feel a bit unsettled, so I thought some ginger might help settle the stomach. Plus, it will also warm me up!
There is a good amount of ginger to this blend, but, there is enough Tulsi to sort of taper the peppery heat of the ginger a bit. It’s still rather warm from the ginger, though. I really like the combination of tulsi and ginger – the tulsi has a slight earthy/herbaceous kind of flavor going on, as well a very subtle minty note. It’s a very gentle flavor and a nice contrast to the strong spice of the ginger. Kind of like a good cop/bad cop thing going on with my tastebuds!
Certainly an enjoyable, soothing, warming cup.
Thank you to TeaEqualsBliss for sending me some of this tea.
I find myself a wee bit disappointed by this tea. Not that it is a bad tea – it isn’t. I guess I’ve been a bit spoiled by some of the Darjeeling teas that I’ve been drinking lately and so I expected more of a Darjeeling flavor from this, that is to say, I wanted Muscatel.
This is more reminiscent of a fine Dragon Well. Nothing wrong with that, I just expected more Darjeeling. It’s kind of a Chinese tasting green tea from India, I guess. Not bad though.
Thank you TeaEqualsBliss for sending me a bit of this blend.
But, I do have to disagree with you… I’m not finding this to be equal parts tulsi and green tea. I’m finding this to be mostly tulsi with a hint of green tea – not just in appearance but also in flavor. I taste the tulsi, but the green tea is just barely there.
It’s still enjoyable, but, not quite what I was expecting.
Here’s a tester-tea from Happy Earth and so far it’s not available for sale on their site but they sent it my way anyways and I am very grateful! Woot!
While it’s still infusing it smell like a gentle peppered green veggies…or even green pepper type aroma…it’s very pleasant.
The flavor – as I swirl it around in my mouth – it also gentle – it is much like a green tea or a black and green blend. It’s slightly vegetal – near savory, but more importantly VERY smooth…almost like a thin broth.
The more I sip – the more I like this! It’s a neat tea!
This is one of the taster-teas that is not available on their site and not for sale. I’m very excited to be given the opportunity to try it!
It’s a light and fluffy type tea. It’s velvety on the tongue. There are hints of malt and flowers and it’s quite nice!
If they were to offer this on their website – I would most likely purchase it :)
This has an amazing fruity aroma – but it’s all natural folks! A straight-up Darjeeling NOT flavored but it sure makes ya guess!
The taste is delightful, too! There is a hint of lime, perhaps, and a springy-sweet bouquet of flowers.
This is a gentle darjeeling but darned tasty! The more I sip the more I like it! This is VERY good for a mellow tea! YUM!
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