Country of Origin: India, Kenya, Sri Lanka
Region: Assam, Kiambu, Dimbula
Shipping Port: Haldia, Mombasa, Colombo
Grade: OP (Orange Pekoe)
Altitude: 1500 ft, 7200 ft, 5200 ft above sea level
Manufacture Type: CTC (Cut, Torn and Curled), Orthodox
Cup Characteristics: All the traditions of Irish tea and then some! Creamy caramel highlights dot a wickedly full-bodied tea
Infusion: Bright, with an origin specific character
Here's to Ireland, the country that can lay claim to the honor of having the most tea drinkers per capita in the entire world! The average Irishman, when not hoisting a Guinness, imbibes an average of 6 cups a day. Even with the country's relatively small population of 3.9 million, that's almost 24 million cups a day!
Tea and Ireland go way back. The drink was first introduced to the country in 1835 by British traders when Ireland was still part of the British Empire. Maintaining a secure supply was never a problem as Ireland relied on British importers for a steady flow of the drink that is until WWII. During the war, Britain was forced to ration foodstuffs of all kinds, tea included, throughout the Empire. The problem for Irish tea-drinkers arose when part way through the war, much to the consternation of the British government, Ireland declared itself neutral in the global conflict. The British retaliated for what they saw as an act of subversion by cutting their tea ration down to almost nothing. Undaunted, the enterprising Irish government set up its own tea importing company, Tea Importers (Eire) Ltd., and tea drinkers throughout the Emerald Isle rejoiced!
In honor of the tea drinking spirit of the hardy Irish, we've developed this good strong blend. This blend, like most tea consumed in Ireland these days is made from East African and Ceylon varieties with a special addition a good strong Assam. The addition of the Assam adds a depth to the tea that is beautifully offset by the addition of cream, another Irish favorite. This is one tea that'll have you standing up singing Danny Boy in no time!
Hot tea brewing method: Bring freshly drawn cold water to a rolling boil. Place 1 teaspoon of tea for each cup into the teapot. Pour the boiling water into the teapot. Cover and let steep for 3-7 minutes according to taste (the longer the steeping time the stronger the tea). Even though milk and a dash of sugar help enhance the flavor character on this tea, it is perfectly acceptable to consume this tea 'straight-up'.
Iced tea brewing method (to make 1 liter/quart): Place 6 teaspoons of tea into a teapot or heat resistant pitcher. Pour 1 1/4 cups of freshly boiled water over the tea. Steep for 5 minutes. Quarter fill a serving pitcher with cold water. Pour the tea into your serving pitcher straining the leaves. Add ice and top-up the pitcher with cold water. Garnish and sweeten to taste. [A rule of thumb when preparing fresh brewed iced tea is to double the strength of hot tea since it will be poured over ice and diluted with cold water]. Please note that this tea may tend to go cloudy or 'milky' when poured over ice; a perfectly normal characteristic of some high quality black teas and nothing to worry about!