The Tale of Two Darjeelings, Part One

The leaves of the Castleton Darjeeling are very green and twisted. When I first tried one of these 1st flush Darjeelings a few days ago, I was thrown off by how similar the 1st flushes are to green teas. I don’t have any prior experience with Darjeelings, but I really thought that they were black teas and perhaps the later flushes are. I don’t know.

What I do know is that this tea is much more like a green tea. If you go into it, like I initially did, expecting a robust black tea that would take milk and/or sugar you will probably be disappointed. However, I’m going into this tasting thinking that this is a green tea.

The dry leaf had a very green smell, but not vegetal. Almost a bit musky, but not off-putting. This Castleton brews up a rich, golden hue similar to that of apple juice and has a medium floral aroma. The first sip begins slightly buttery, followed by a light floral taste. As the cup begins to cool slightly, the fruity scent begins to come into play. It is a bit hard to identify the fruity taste however that Darjeelings are famous for (well, from what I’ve read).

This tea is pretty good, but is best when drank before allowed to cool too much. A light, pleasant floral aftertaste lingers between each sip.

The rating is subject to change depending on whether I prefer this or my other 2010 1st flush Darjeeling. Stay tuned!

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Congrats on getting to try a 1st flush Castleton! Everytime I’ve tried to order one they’ve been out.

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Congrats on getting to try a 1st flush Castleton! Everytime I’ve tried to order one they’ve been out.

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Formally known as mrawlins2

I am a former coffee drinker turned tea lover.

Black tea is probably my favorite type of tea, but I rather enjoy most types… I’m even developing a taste for pu-erh.

Rating Scale:
0-10: This tea is either flavorless or just plain undrinkable. I will avoid these teas in the future.

11-20: I was only able to make it through a few sips before pouring the tea out.

21-30: I may have been able to make it through the first cup but the thought of having another has me cringing.

31-40: Teas in this range are not horrible, but nothing I would seek out in the future.

41-60: Would drink if offered, but would not purchase for myself.

61-70: Okay, nothing special

71-80: Enjoyable, but I have to be in the mood for these. Probably would purchase if I found a really great price.

81-90: Pretty good tea, will probably be one of my favorites.

91-95: These teas are really excellent. I wouldn’t necessarily run out and buy more of these (just because there are so many teas out there that I haven’t tried), but I would miss this tea.

96-99: Terrific, very impressive.

100: This special rating is reserved for teas that are absolutely perfect in my opinion. I will only give out a rating of 100 to one tea per category (Earl Grey, unflavored black, dessert tea, Irish Breakfast, etc). These are teas that I really want to have around.

Perfect Teas so Far:

Earl Grey: Saint Isaac’s Blend (Russian Earl Grey) from Upton

Dessert Tea: Marco Polo from Mariage Freres

Unflavored Black: Emperor’s Red from Premium Steap



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