Between heaven and earth
After India, it is mainly Sri Lanka (Ceylon). Indonesia (Sumatra, Java) and China that supply the market with tea. In whatever country the tea is grown, it attaches importance to a certain level. In other words, he loves high altitude. It must be at least 700 meters above sea level for tea to feel at home. The finest varieties usually grow at altitudes of around 2000 meters.
Were we talking about sites? In fact, the term, which we know from good wine, also has its justification for tea. There are an almost infinite number of varieties and qualities, due to the different characteristics of the growing regions, altitude, soil, climate, harvest time, processing method, etc.
Harvesting takes place several times a year, for example in Darjeeling (northern India): First flush in spring (particularly delicate, light, fragrant), second flush in summer (much stronger, darker, more aromatic), autumnal and even later harvests in areas with a mild climate all year round are a good basis for tea blends. No matter how often and when it is picked, only the tenderest shoots go into the basket, the top two leaves and a bud: two leaves and a bud.
All tea, by the way, is first green tea and continues to be called so when, after harvesting, it is withered, rolled, subjected to a short steam bath and then dried immediately afterwards.
The transformation into black tea is more complex. After harvesting, the leaves must first wither for up to 24 hours and are then rolled by machine, during which the cell walls break open and the escaping juice is oxidized by the oxygen in the air. During fermentation, the fine aromas and flavors develop and the tea leaves initially turn copper-red. Only during the subsequent drying process does the characteristic black color develop.
Source: German tea office