This is my very first Darjeeling, hooray! It’s good to know that it’s organic, fair trade AND produced on a biodynamic estate as well. The dry leaf smells like autumn leaves with a little bit of a fruity scent, overall the smell is reminiscent of a darker oolong. As for the flavor, there’s definitely a little bit of a roasty flavor but the flavor is predominantly fruity, specifically grape. On top of this, there is a little bit of a pleasant astringency. This is a second flush tea, so I’m sure there are better Darjeelings out there but my first impression of Darjeelings is a positive one, because this stuff is GOOOD. This would without a doubt make a fantastic cold-brewed iced tea.
Makaibari Estate Muscatel Darjeeling (Organic/Fair Trade)
One of the treasures of Darjeeling’s second flush, or harvest, in Darjeeling are the lots denoted “muscatel”. This full-bodied muscatel from Makaibari Estate has a pronounced, beautiful fragrance and taste suggestive of ripe stone fruit and a long finish with pleasant astringency.
Organically Grown. Fair Trade Certified.
Makaibari Estate—meaning “Maize Land”—was founded in 1859 in Darjeeling, in the state of West Bengal. In the twenty-first century, Makaibari is one of the few vertically integrated estates in Darjeeling, meaning that the estate owners also control tea production. A pioneer in biodynamic farming methods, the estate was the first in the world to be certified by the Demeter Association—one of the leading governing bodies of biodynamic agriculture. The estate’s concern for the well-being of its employees and their families has also merited Fair Trade Certification.