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Two Leaves and a Bud

Posted on 04/06/2023

Two Leaves and a Bud The leaf set in the photo pictured above is the paragon of a “perfect plucking,” selected from our TD166: Rohini Estate 2021 First Flush Darjeeling. It was the most anticipated tea of the year, the very first shipment of freshly harvested tea that was plucked following a long winter.

Tea harvested earlier in the season is a highly desired flavor profile. To produce this top-quality tea, the leaves selected must be exemplary. The best leaf plucking for optimal flavor and mouthfeel is widely regarded as a set of two leaves and a bud, often referred to as a “fine plucking.” In Darjeeling, this leaf style is designated with the nomenclature of SFTGFOP1 – Super Fine Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe, grade 1. The end of the stem indicates that this tea was hand plucked with exquisite precision, as it is straight and even across with all other parts intact.

Even after the leaves are processed, they remain whole on the stem. The tea’s journey is far from over, as the leaves are packaged up and shipped from the mountains to the city and loaded on an airplane for the trip to the United States. They traverse through an FDA inspection and customs clearance before being shipped to our warehouse in Holliston, Massachusetts.

A rigorous journey for delicate, dried leaves, all the way from India! Still, when they arrive, they are cupped and unfurl into perfect leaf sets. After we taste them, we write our tea descriptions and photograph the leaves to share with you how they taste and appear. An authentic work of art by nature, processed by dedicated people, all so you can steep it to perfection for your very own “cup of sunshine.” Enjoy!

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