Nilgiri Gold | Premium Nilgiri Black Tea
Taste: Golden raisin & fresh cranberry
Tea Maker: Tea Studio
Steep 1 1 Tbsp /2.5 g | 8 oz | 210° F | 2.5 min
Steep 2 8 oz | 210° F | 3.5 min
Certifications: None (organically grown, verified through testing)
Nilgiri Gold is an uplifting whole-leaf black tea, bursting with notes of fresh cranberries and smooth, creamy vanilla. Crafted by one of the first all-woman teams of tea makers in India, the tea is paving new roads for Nilgiri teas.
Tasting Notes: Nilgiri Gold’s fruity body plays between tart fresh cranberries and sweet raisins. The tea is bright, yet surprisingly deep, and is rounded off with a pleasant, vanilla finish. Unlike most Indian black teas, which can leave one’s mouth feeling dry, Nilgiri Gold is smooth and gentle. The tea's balance of sweet and tangy make it delicious iced or hot. As a crowd pleaser for nearly everyone who tries it, lovers of any black tea are sure to enjoy this one.
Production: This whole-leaf black is made from the large tea bushes native to low-lying Assam. Defying traditional knowledge regarding where the Assam bush can grow, the plant has found a happy home in the high-elevation tropical mountains of southern India. Small-scale farmers carefully harvest the plant’s new growth and bring it to the Tea Studio for processing, where an all-woman team carefully handles the harvest to ensure a whole-leaf black tea ends up in your cup. This tea was first created by Indi Khanna, the founder of Tea Studio and a veteran grower with some incredible stories and a devilish sense of humor. When his daughter Muskan took the helm at Tea Studio, Indi taught her his secrets, and she has since raised the bar even higher.
Region: The Nilgiri region contains India’s southernmost mountains. While the district is only slightly larger than Darjeeling, it produces nearly four times as much tea. The prolific growth can be attributed to the lush tropical climate that allows for year-round growth. Unlike other regions, most of the land is owned by small growers who sell their green leaf to “bought leaf” factories. Nigiri teas are generally known to be less bitter and difficult to oversteep. They also don’t get cloudy as they steep, which makes them popular for high-end iced tea. Read our blog about this region here.
Tea Makers: Tea Studio is a state-of-the-art processing facility in the Nilgiris, run by Muskan Khanna and jointly owned by several international partners. Muskan’s father, Indi, has been experimenting with just about every aspect of tea since Muskan was a child--from growing the leaf, to sourcing the equipment, to exporting tea by the container. Indi is a fearless self-made tea man, and Muskan inherited her father’s love for tea. Her creativity and passion is evident in the teas her team makes--they all incorporate traditional Chinese methods and machines. Under Muskan’s leadership, Tea Studio is currently run and operated exclusively by a team of women–rare for the tea industry in any part of the world, let alone India. Tea Studio is also an educational space designed to host groups and teach professionals how to make fine whole-leaf teas. Read more about Muskan’s Journey.
Impact: In a trade dominated by men, Muskan and the all-woman team at Tea Studio show change is possible. They are exercising a level of creativity unheard of in India tea, rethinking every aspect of tea’s production, from the field to the factory. And with women leading the way, social norms are being transformed in Nilgiri villages, as locals see women creating teas that are getting attention from buyers from across the globe. Through Tea Studio’s educational offerings, they are creating opportunities for more small growers to gain the skills needed to make high-quality teas, raising up their entire community.
Packaging: Our teas come in resealable standup pouches with strong moisture and oxygen barriers. All our pouches are made with at least 20% post-consumer recycled milk jugs and water bottles. They are infinitely reusable although not recyclable. They are essentially high-end resealable bags. After you have finished your tea, wash and reuse them to store your car snacks, carry your favorite trail-mix on a hike, or even store odds and ends such as art and craft supplies, batteries and toiletries.