Our Teas

We select only the world’s finest loose-leaf teas

A JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY

All tea comes from the same plant: Camellia Sinensis. But as with grapes, not all teas are equal. The quality of the tea depends upon the soil, the situation and the local climate. Some might call this the terroir.

We experimented with over 150 different teas before we landed on the two very special ones that we use to create our Sparkling Teas today. Read on to find out more about the first flush Darjeeling that develops into our Royal Flush and the pan-fired Dragonwell green tea that becomes our Dry Dragon.

First Flush Darjeeling

India

Known in India as The Champagne of Teas, we work with a single tea garden in the Lesser Himalayas, near Darjeeling, India. North-facing, and in sight of the world’s third highest mountain, Kangchenjunga, frosts in winter chill the plants, and shade in spring allows for slower growth.

The first flush refers to the very the first tips of the tea that emerge in spring. We pick just the bud and the first leaf from the plant within the first 3-4 weeks of the beginning of the growing season. Withered, rolled, gently oxidised and then dried with great care, this ensures that the leaves are young, fresh and produce delicate fruity notes.

The tea is richly fragrant and creates a brew that is fresh and floral. The tea alone develops notes of young rhubarb, peach and a touch of summer berries. The fruit and spice flavours round out the acids to make it soft and delicate. Delightful to drink freshly brewed any time of day.

But it is in fermentation that the first flush really comes alive. The delicate floral notes of the tea develop into fruity notes of stewed rhubarb, gooseberry, white peach and a touch of blackcurrant. Like a diamond cut from its raw stone.

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Lonjing Green Tea

China

Also known as Dragonwell, this is the highest quality pan-roasted green tea from Hangzhou, Zheijiang province and ranks as one of the finest teas in China. The region is particularly famous for its natural beauty nestled in the side of West Lake.

Dragonwell tea originates from just eighteen tea bushes that were given special imperial status by the Qianlong Emperor during the Qing dynasty. These eighteen original tea bushes are still being picked today.

In order to make green tea, the leaves must be baked just after being picked to prevent oxidation and the transformation into a black tea. Unlike the steamed Japanese Sencha green teas, often used in other fermented drinks, Longjing tea leaves are hand fired in big handfuls in a large open wok. This is a highly skilled process, the operator delicately controlling the level of bake to ensure that they develop the best flavours in the final leaf. Processed in this way, the Dragonwell leaves have a distinctive, emerald-green, flat leaf and a delightfully unique fragrance of nuts and straw.

Very mellow, sweet and rounded in taste, the tea after fermentation produces citrus notes of sweet lemons and grapefruit, but with a delicate leafy undertone.

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Our Processes

Find out more about how we make our Naturally Fermented Sparkling Teas.

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