Assam Tea VS Darjeeling Tea: Which is better?

Both Assam Tea and Darjeeling Tea are India’s most popular teas and well-known across the world. They get their names from the region they are grown in and are considered to be some of the highest quality teas you can get on the basis of their distinctive taste, flavour and aroma.

The regions of Assam and Darjeeling lie adjacent to each other in the north-eastern part of India which is why it is easy to assume that both teas are similar. However, while both regions enjoy similar climatic conditions, their teas could not be more different. This difference can mainly be attributed to the following reasons:

Climate:

Assam enjoys short, cool winters and hot, humid summers along with plenty of rainfall in both seasons. Most of India’s tea production takes place in this region. Darjeeling, in winters, is colder and harsher than Assam and has a much slower rate of producing tea.

Terrain:

Assam tea is cultivated on low lying lands whereas Darjeeling tea is produced on highlands. The most expensive Darjeeling tea is the one that’s cultivated on the foothills of the Himalayas. The tea producing area in Darjeeling is also much less than the tea producing region in Assam.

Harvest:

Assam tea is harvested in two seasons- once in March and second in May & June. The first harvest that occurs in March is called the First Flush and it produces tea that is fresh, flowery and fragrant. The second harvest that occurs in May and June is called the Second Flush and produces tea that has a stronger flavour profile with spicy and malty undertones.

 

zaira tea

Color:

Darjeeling tea when brewed has a lighter colour than Assam tea. The former has a pale green- almost golden-ish hue whereas the latter has a deeper, reddish- brown jewel tone.

Darjeeling tea when brewed has a lighter colour than Assam tea. The former has a pale green- almost golden-ish hue whereas the latter has a deeper, reddish- brown jewel tone.

Flavour:

Flavours of both Darjeeling tea and Assam tea depend on their season of harvest. However, majorly Assam tea is strong with a nutty undertone whereas Darjeeling tea is a little spicier.

How to drink:

Darjeeling tea because of its delicate flavours is best consumed without milk or sugar to really let the flavours come out. Assam tea, on the other hand, tastes best with condiments like milk and sugar to cut through the strong taste and bring out the flavour palette.

Assam tea and Darjeeling tea are both great teas and a preference for either depends entirely on your taste buds. For the classic milky chai, Assam tea is your best bet. For those who enjoy a lighter, more delicate brew, Darjeeling tea is perfect for late evening indulgences. Try both varieties from Zaira Tea to experience the best there is.

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