Nilgiri Green Dragon
Nilgiri Green Dragon | Premium Indian Green Tea
Raise Your Cup
Taste: Dried apricot & fresh bamboo
Tea Maker: Tea Studio
Steep 1 1 Tbsp /2.5 g | 8 oz | 190° F | 3 min
Steep 2 8 oz | 195° F | 3.5 min
Certifications: None (organically grown, verified through testing)
Nilgiri Green Dragon is a pan-roasted green tea with a fruity body grounded by gentle, woody bamboo. The all-woman team at Tea Studio drew inspiration for this tea from Longjing, the famous Chinese green tea.
Tasting Notes: This is a full-bodied green tea that steeps into a pale yellow cup. It has plenty of mouthfeel, with silky top notes of dried apricots sitting on top of a deep, soft, woody body that tastes of bamboo. Nilgiri Dragon has a clean, tight finish. Be sure to steep this tea at least twice, as it evolves with each infusion. Lovers of Chinese Longjing or Jasmine Pearl are sure to enjoy this one.
Production: High up in the Nilgiri mountains of southern India, this tea begins with small farmers performing a fine pluck of the tea bush. They sell their harvest to the tea makers at Tea Studio, who apply a dry heat to bring out the sweet, floral notes associated with Chinese green teas and also to prevent any oxidizing. Afterwards, the tea is flattened through a panning process, which gives it its unique shape and stronger, deeper flavors. Tea Studio modeled this tea after the famous Chinese green tea named Longjing, which translates to “dragon well.”
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.