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 summer picking is one of Darjeeling’s most anticipated second 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”. One example for a traditional black Darjeeling tea of the summer picking is our Jungpana Second Flush 2019 Vintage Muscatel.
The Indian Second Flush Season
Most of us might know the term “second flush” only from India. However, this doesn’t mean there wouldn’t be any “second flushes” – summer pickings – in other tea regions, too. Though the spring picking generally enjoys the highest prestige among tea lovers for most types of tea, summer pickings do have their own favorable features. This applies in particular to India, where in summer the flowery notes of the spring picking give way to ever deeper sweetness. To support and highlight this sweetness at its best, Darjeeling tea gardens generally process their second flushes to classic black tea. As a result, most friends of Darjeeling tea will have a place for both in their hearts – and in their cupboards. And there are even tea lovers, who prefer the sweet dark roast of a black second flush from the floweriness of the first flushes.
Jungpana Second Flush Vintage Muscatel
Jungpana Second Flush 2019 Vintage Muscatel
Like other seasonal teas of the estate, the Jungpana Second Flush is one of the best choices among Darjeeling summer pickings. Many Darjeeling lovers will consider the traditional processing of Jungpana Second Flush as a black Darjeeling tea in the classic sense as beneficial. Up to 3 minutes, a harmonious composition of fruity-sweet and tart muscat notes characterizes the second flush of the tea garden. Beyond 3 minutes, the Muskatel increasingly prevail. With this, the tea gains in spice and builds up an aftertaste that will delights the tea lover far beyond the actual drinking experience.
Jungpana Second Flush 2019 Vintage Muscatel – wet tea leaves afer infusion
First, poor 200-250 ml boiling hot water (90°C-100°C) over 5g Jungpana Second Flush 2019 Vintage Muscatel in a teapot. Let infuse for 3-5 minutes, according to personal preferences, for mild and harmonious to bold first infusion. A second infusion is always an option, living up to much more than just keeping this tea’s delicious aftertaste alive!