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Latumoni Tea Garden, Assam, Northeast India
Latumoni is the name of a comparably small, family-run tea garden in Assam, northeast India. In contrast to the large, established Assam tea estates, Latumoni tea garden occupies a niche in two respects. On the one hand, tea is still grown here in a close-to-nature way, without industrial aids or pesticide use. On the other hand, at Latumoni the tea leaves are still picked by hand and processed the traditional way. And the result of the interaction of natural cultivation, craftsmanship and tradition is, of course … a true Artisan tea!
Accordingly, with Latumoni’s Royal Tippy Assam First Flush Black Tea, Siam Tea Shop once again enters new territory. And embarks on a mission that is to carry the love and passion Latumoni invests into growing and processing their teas right into the cups of tea lovers worldwide.
From a historical perspective, Assam is one of the oldest “tea countries” in the world. This is because it’s the home of Camellia Sinensis Assamica, one of the earliest evolutionary representatives of the tea plant. The conditions for good tea just couldn’t be any better. In fact, Assam has exactly the right climate for tea cultivation – cool winters, hot summers, rainy and dry periods and fog-covered forests and heights. That is why Assam is one of India’s two most important tea growing regions, alongside Darjeeling.
In the mid-19th century, when the British colonial power discovered Assam as a possible new source for their tea, indigenous people had long tapped into the blessings of the tea leaf. However, we owe it to the British that Assam is now one of the biggest geographic names in the tea industry. Because Assam has been producing large amounts of cheap tea for the mass market ever since. This circumstance is also to blame for the widespread perception black Assam teas wouldn’t be edible without milk and sugar…
Latumoni Royal Tippy Assam First Flush Black Tea
Well, here we have a black Assam tea from Latumoni’s spring picking that does not only go well without milk and sugar. Much rather, it actually stands above milk and sugar. And in terms of sweetness and balance, it can easily compete with an upscale Dian Hong Cha!
As with such, the sweetness in the full-bodied taste comes embedded in pronounced chocolate and coffee notes. At the same time, the Latumoni Royal Tippy Assam Second Flush also asserts its geographical identity. For the specific character of Assam is expressed in a mineral-earthy composition. However, this never dominates the complex overall picture, but instead blends harmoniously into it.
The unfolded leaf after infusion shows the excellent leaf and processing quality found only in real Artisan teas. For example, the strict adherence to a 2 + 1 picking standard is just one feature making this tea stand out s out from commercial Assam teas.
For preparing Latumoni Royal Tippy Assam First Flush Black Tea, we recommend a dosage of 4-5g tea leaves on 200-250ml water. This should have an infusion temperature of 90°-100°C, bubbling boiling hot. After 3 minutes, the tea fully unfolds its flavor spectrum and presents it in gentle mildness. Beyond 3 minutes, the infusion gains additional spice. Bitterness, on the other hand, is completely absent even with a 5 minute infusion period.
Assam Small Growers Movement
For decades, producing tea for the export market has been reserved to a virtual monopoly of some large, established tea estates.This applies equally to both Darjeeling and Assam. However, in recent times modern communication media have enabled even small producers to find a market for their teas. Now, instead of competing with the established estates’ on their own territory, Assam “small Growers” are looking at a niche that is virtually unoccupied by the big players. Namely, this is the top quality segment in tea production, natural grown, hand-picked and traditionally processed Artisan teas.
Therefore, Siam Tea Shop is working with The Tea Leaf Theory, an association of small tea producers in Northeast India. Each member of the association commits to its basic principles of close-to-nature cultivation, high-quality processing and fair trade practices. Further information about The Tea Leaf Theory and the Latumoni tea garden in Assam provides the dedicated article in Siam Tea Blog / SIAM TEABLOID:
More Teas from Assam and Darjeeling
For more teas from Assam and Drajeeling, see here at Siam Tea Shop!