Assam leopards blend is a strong bodied tea with a bright amber infusion, malty flavor and some astringency with a high caffeine level in the 60’s mg for a 5 oz cup. Ideal for a breakfast tea.
Assam comes from the Assam region of India which is one of the world’s largest regions for growing tea. It is situated in the North East of India, east of the Darjeeling region bordering Bangladesh and Myanmar. It is the main tea used in most of the Breakfast teas because of its strong, full bodied taste and high caffeine levels. It is used in our English Breakfast tea and blended with a tea from Ceylon and another tea from the Nilgiri region of India.
The tea is from an indigenous Camellia Sinensis plant of the Assam region. After the British failed with tea plants that were imported from China, Robert Bruce from Scotland found the plant growing wild in the region in the 1830’s. He died before he could see the success of his discovery, but his brother, Charles was able to show that the plant was in fact tea.
The tea is grown in the lowlands of India in contrast to the Darjeeling & Nilgiri (Blue Mountain) regions. Normally there are two pickings, which are called flushes, the first the end of March early April and the other later in the year depending on the plantation. Unlike Darjeelings, the second flush is considered the better picking because it is more tippy and has an infusion that is sweeter. The leaves also exhibit the golden leaves that with the tippy classification give a tea with the India designation of TGOP – tippy golden orange pekoe.
This tea is perhaps as fierce as the feline that it's named after! The region is the native home of leopards, although their numbers are in decline. In mythology the leopard or panther was a symbol associated with the god Dionysis. In reality, the leopard has been listed as an endangered species since 1970, a victim of habitat loss and poaching. However, by supporting the tea growers in the area, you can help to provide an alternative means of income for locals who might otherwise resort to poaching of animals as a way to earn an income.
And if you're fond of teas from India, as sure as a leopard has spots, you'll love Assam Leopards!