Tea estate “Jungpana” in Darjeeling, northeast India – click picture to enlarge
Jungpana Tea Estate
Jungpana is a classic Indian tea estate, located about 10-12 km south of Kurseong town in the pictoresque highland of Darjeeling. The tea garden’s extremely rugged terrain covers altitudes between 1000 and 2000 meters above sea level. Jungpana is known as Darjeeling’s hardest to access tea estate. Even today, the only access way to the estate is quite an adventurous suspension bridge, made of wood and ropes. Beyond that, there’s more then 600 stairs to conquer. The estate has a reputation for its teas’ constant high quality across years and seasons. Thus, Jungpana’s first spring picking is one of Darjeeling’s most anticipated first flushes every year.
The Jungpana Legend
According to legend, a British hunter once roamed this part of the Himalayan foothills with his gurkha, Jung Bahadur. When the two suddenly faced a leopard attack. the faithful gurkha stood up for his master. When the latter finally had disposed of the beast, Jung Bahadur had already suffered some severe injuries. Felling thirsty, he asked his master for water, “pana”. His master then carried him to a nearby stream and let him drink. Little later, Jung Bahadur succumbed to his injuries and died in his master’s arms. Since then, the area goes by the name of “Jungpana”, the place, where Jung Bahadur had his last sip of water. So far the legend…
The Jungpana History
History documents that Jungpana tea garden first came into being through the plantings of British Sir Henry Montgomery Lennox. Since that time, the estate has changed ownership several times until 1956, when the Kejriwal family took over. Still in charge of the tea garden today, it was the who made Jungpana accessible for motor vehicles for the first time. To do this, they constructed a 4 km long road through neighboring Goomtee Tea Estate, ending at the said suspension bridge. However, large parts of that road – and the bridge itself – had to be completely rebuilt after exposure to a massive landslide in 1993.
Health and environment-friendly Cultivation and Modern Processing Facilities
It was also the Kejriwals, who introduced health and environment-friendly farming techniques soon after taking over the tea garden. In addition, Jungpana’s processing facilities underwent comprehensive modernization during the past decades. What’s more, the estate’s tea portfolio has developed with the trends of time. Today, Jungpana enjoys worldwide fame for its sprightly, spring-fresh first flushes, full-bodied second flushes and malty-mild “autumnals” (autumn pickings).
However, outside the processing facilities, Jungpana displays a rather traditional fashion. So, picking is done manually, as always has been, which in this tea garden’s difficult terrain is not exactly an easy task. Also, the transport of freshly picked tea leaves and ready processed tea represents quite a challenge here.
Tea from India @ Siam Tea Shop
The sustainable trend to more quality with tea on the western market increasingly bears sweet fruit in India, too. Year after year, the mayor tea estates in Darjeeling and Assam compete for the market’s recognition for each season’s best “First Flush“, “Second Flush” or “Autumnal”. However, not only quality comes from India at new levels today, but also completely new diversity of India’s tea portfolio. Black tea, for example, the classic of Indian teas, suddenly comes around in the most diverse appearances. The spectrum reaches from the modern, flowery, spring-hearted first flush to full-bodied, dark roasted second flushes to earthy and malty autumnals.
The autumn flushes, also called “autumnals”, today ever mor often are referred to as the “lost treasure of Darjeeling”. But, actually, why “lost”? Well, if it comes to tea from Darjeeling (or Assam, for that matter), it used to be all about first and second Flushes, i.e. the teas from the first and second spring harvest seasons. Later summer pickings, on the other hand – and even more the autumn flushes – used to wear a perceived labeling of low quality. Especially those “autumnals”, however, do not deserve this reputation in any way. Who doesn’t know this, hasn’t tried! And our Jungpana Autumn Flush 2018 FTGFOP1 CH has all it takes to convince any friend of black teas of the contrary!
Autumnals @ Siam Tea Shop
As of 2016, Darjeeling autumn flushes – among them Jungpana Autumn Flush – have become a permanent institution with us. And this not only in the shop, but also – and in particular – in our cups. As unbelievable this might sound, these teas ARE a reason to look forward to autumn! That is to say the multifacetted gentleness and the comparably low caffeine content of the autumnals really get the very best out of long autumn and winter nights. Every year, we select the season’s most convincing teas from the pickings of a range of Darjeeling tea estates. Now, let me convince you, too, and try our autumnals now.
Jungpana Autumn Flush 2018 FTGFOP1 CH
As with Jungpana’s first and second flushes, it is full-bodiedness and well-balanced spicyness that characterize the tea garden’s autumnal. At this, the flowery notes of spring have widely given way to the malty flavors of the late season in Jungpana Autumn Flush. Well present, on the other hand, are still the brisk muscatel notes of summer. In Jungpana Autumn Flush, the latter combine with the autumn picking’s malty sweetness to a complex, both mild and spicy composition that helps this tea to an elevated level of individuality within its kind.
First, poor 200-250 ml boiling hot water (90°C-100°C) over 4g Jungpana Autumn Flush FTGFOP1 CH in a teapot. Let infuse for 3-5 minutes for a full flavor infusion. A second infusion is always an option and lives up to more than just keeping this tea’s delicious, long lingering aftertaste alive!