|"Bright, brisk, and refreshing. A cheering cup."|
You will be greeted by a grandmother-aged woman grinning a joy-spreading grin, toasting the camera with a cup of tea. It is the perfect image for a company named "Happy Earth," (HE.)
According to co-owner of HE Niraj Lama, the photo typifies the hospitable spirit of the people of Darjeeling. He should know since he lived in Darjeeling his entire life. He did however, move to New York with his wife and partner Mary Boland in 2010 . There they set up HE, specializing in tea from Lama's homeland.
Buying Darjeeling tea from folks from Darjeeling has many advantages. Not only do they know the right people and the right leaves, they know how to communicate a proper reverence for their product. For instance, describing tea is so much easier if you understand tea terminology. HE features a "tea taster's argot" on their website (I had to look up "argot." It means a "specialized, insider's vocabulary." ) Enriched by my mini-course in tea terms, I endeavored to use those terms when reviewing Tukdah Summer.
The dry leaves, I would say were "stylish," meaning they were neat, well twisted, evenly sized, and wiry. The infused leaves produced a bright and somewhat deep yellow color with a "nose" or "point" that was malty and lemony.
Learning about "flavor" and "taste" baffled me at first. I learned that they differ from one another in that "taste" it is less specific. Tukdah Summer, for instance, had a fruity "flavor" and a "brisk" taste.
"Aftertaste" is not listed in HE's argot, but I must mention that this tea had a grassy, fresh, aftertaste that lingered in my mouth. This kept me wanting more. Happy Earth, you made me a happy tea drinker. I rate you a 9.
» Read more about this reviewer on CJ's profile page.
» Find a list of recent posts by CJ.