Ceylon Green Tea
Country of Origin: Sri Lanka
Shipping Port: Colombo
Grade: Small gunpowder
Altitude: 5000 - 6400 feet above sea level
Manufacture Type: Special gunpowder green tea
Cup characteristics: A green tea with surprising body and a captivating taste that has an intriguing hint of oakiness.
Infusion: Greenish full bodied slightly high-fired character.
Ingredients: Green tea
Gunpowder tea is produced like green tea but after the steaming process
the tea is tightly rolled into what appears to be pellets. When boiling
water is poured over the leaves they quickly expand and in some cases
can almost fill the cup. Royal Gunpowder is an especially good green
tea for the following reasons:
- The base tea comes from some of the best estates in Sri Lanka
- The tightness of the rolled pellets gives excellent flavour when made into tea.
- The region where the tea is grown - Dimbula - is a high grown area
producing full-bodied flavory tea. In Dimbula the peak quality time is
during February when northwest monsoons create dry weather conditions
Royal Gunpowder tea is manufactured in very limited quantities due to
the time and diligence required to manufacture this high quality tea.
It is very difficult to achieve such a tight roll of leaves; but this
process allows this particular type of tea to able to be stored for a
long time without any deterioration in quality.
Tea was planted in Sri Lanka by the British in the 1860’s after coffee
rust wiped out the then primary agricultural coffee crop. At that time
the British East Indies Company had a near monopoly on tea, with most
of Britain’s needs coming from China. Relations between China and
Britain were quite rocky during this period (on account of the opium
trade) and tea in Sri Lanka looked like a great way to diversify supply
risk by ‘the company’. This gunpowder tea is made in the Chinese
tradition but the benefits are superior quality tea.
Hot tea brewing method: When preparing by the cup, this tea can be used
repeatedly - about 3 times. The secret is to use water that is about
180’F or 80’C. Place 1 teaspoon in your cup let the tea steep for about
3 minutes and then begin enjoying a cup of enchantment - do not remove
the leaves from the cup. Once the water level is low - add more water,
and so on and so on - until the flavor of the tea is exhausted. Look at
the pattern of the leaves in the brew, not only do they foretell your
fortune but you can see the bud and shoots presenting themselves,
looking like they are about to be plucked. Alternatively as with all
top quality teas, scoop 2-4 teaspoons of tea into the teapot, pour in
boiling water that has been freshly drawn (previously boiled water has
lost most of its oxygen and therefore tends to be flat tasting), steep
for 2-4 minutes (to taste), stir (virtually all the leaves will sink),
pour into your cup but do not add milk or sugar since green tea is