Darjeeling First Flush

 
Updated: Mar. 14, 2014 

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Browse Darjeeling First Flush (93)Read Reviews (39)Brands of Darjeeling First Flush

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About Darjeeling First Flush | Best (Top-Rated) Darjeeling First Flush

About Darjeeling First Flush

Darjeeling first flush tea leaves, showing a greenish color
First flush Darjeeling tea often has a greener color, sometimes even as green as some green teas.
Darjeeling first flush or first flush Darjeeling tea designates Darjeeling tea that has been harvested at a specific time, immediately following spring rains.

Although technically classified as a black tea, first flush Darjeeling tea has often a lighter, often greenish color and can be much milder than most black teas. Many first flush Darjeeling teas are low in bitterness, but relatively high in astringency, and can have considerable natural sweetness.

They often have a pronounced floral aroma as well, and some have a "muscatel" aroma, suggesting muscat grapes. In many respects, these teas more closely resemble greener oolong teas in color, flavor, and aroma because the oxidation is less complete than in most black teas. However, they are usually considered distinct from proper Darjeeling oolongs.

A cup of tea with a light golden color
A brewed cup of first flush Darjeeling. Photo by David J. Fred, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5.
First flush Darjeeling is considered a highly desirable tea, and can be very expensive, although the range of prices is broad. Broken-leaf, single-estate first flush teas can sometimes be less expensive than whole-leaf, mixed-flush, blended Darjeeling. Because the qualities of each tea depend on the climate conditions of the particular year of harvest, the batches can vary considerably from year to year.

Brewing first flush teas

In contrast to darker black teas, which most companies recommend brewing with boiling water, some companies recommend brewing first flush Darjeeling teas, especially lighter batches, with water that has cooled somewhat from boiling, around 180°-190°F. Whether or not this is necessary can vary hugely from one tea to the next.

Niraj Lama of Happy Earth Tea, explains that high grades of Darjeeling first flush work exceptionally well with cold brewing, which he explains on a blog post on cold brewing Darjeeling.

Best Darjeeling First Flush

The notion of the "best" Darjeeling First Flush is subjective, because different people have different tastes. We present the most often-rated and highest-rated teas in this category, and allow you to draw your own conclusions.

Most Often-Rated Teas

Picture of Puttabong, Darjeeling First Flush 2014.

Puttabong, Darjeeling First Flush 2014.

Brand:Happy Earth Tea
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
60
3 Ratings
Picture of Singbulli Darjeeling DJ41

Singbulli Darjeeling DJ41

Brand:Harney and Sons
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
81
3 Ratings
Picture of Darjeeling Vidyaranya Black Tea

Darjeeling Vidyaranya Black Tea

Brand:Teavana
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
18
3 Ratings
Picture of Singbulli, Darjeeling Black Tea, First Flush 2014

Singbulli, Darjeeling Black Tea, First Flush 2014

Brand:Happy Earth Tea
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
85
3 Ratings
Picture of Arya Ruby, Darjeeling First Flush 2014

Arya Ruby, Darjeeling First Flush 2014

Brand:Happy Earth Tea
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
2 Ratings

Top-Rated Teas

Picture of Singbulli, Darjeeling Black Tea, First Flush 2014

Singbulli, Darjeeling Black Tea, First Flush 2014

Brand:Happy Earth Tea
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
85
3 Ratings
Picture of Singbulli Darjeeling DJ41

Singbulli Darjeeling DJ41

Brand:Harney and Sons
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
81
3 Ratings
Picture of Puttabong, Darjeeling First Flush 2014.

Puttabong, Darjeeling First Flush 2014.

Brand:Happy Earth Tea
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
60
3 Ratings
Picture of Darjeeling Vidyaranya Black Tea

Darjeeling Vidyaranya Black Tea

Brand:Teavana
Region:Darjeeling, India
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
18
3 Ratings

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