The origins of Glenburn White Moonshine White Tea
Floral and citrusy in flavour with hints of cool mint, our Glenburn White Moonshine luxury loose leaf tea is heaven-sent. A Darjeeling first flush, this wonderful speciality tea is released each spring in small batches from the historic Glenburn Tea Estate, located in the cloud-shrouded foothills of the Himalayas.
As soon as you open the caddy, you're met with the most enticing of aromas – a lingering mix of sweet, floral, fruity and fresh scents rising from its wiry leaves. Long, tippy and elegantly curled, these leaves are dominated by silver tips and mossy-green buds, hinting at the exceptional flavour waiting to be released.
When brewed, this Darjeeling tea from the 2021 spring harvest is light golden in colour with a delicate, understated taste that has plenty of sweet, citrusy characters plus the added complexity of mint and subtle floral notes. Exceptionally low in both caffeine and astringency, with a lively character and creamy mouthfeel, it's a wonderful example of why the finest Darjeeling's are often referred to as the 'Champagne of teas'.
How this Darjeeling white tea is made
Glenburn White Moonshine is made exclusively from the most tender shoots of the estate’s tea bushes. Only the most experienced pickers are allowed to work on this rare tea, which requires meticulous care to produce. Being a white tea, there is no oxidation involved in the processing method, which means it’s made with low-intervention techniques – instrumental in preserving the tea’s antioxidant-rich compounds.
As well as careful handling, the weather is a key determining factor as to how good a flush will be. The 2021 harvest started in late March after a drought- and Covid-impacted year. Luckily, although growth was affected in 2021, the pickers at Glenburn tea garden could harvest enough of the silvery tender clonal buds essential to produce another outstanding White Moonshine.
Where is Glenburn Tea Estate?
Two snow-fed Himalayan rivers – the Rangeet and the Rung Dung – wind through the spectacular Glenburn gardens, located in the Darjeeling district of West Bengal at elevations between 244m and 985m.
Founded in 1859 by a Scottish tea company, Glenburn Tea Estate, it later passed into the hands of the Prakash family, local landowners who today are one of the most respected tea-making dynasties in India.
Fondly known in Darjeeling as the Chaiwala family – Hindi for ‘tea planters’ – the Prakashes are currently in their fourth generation at Glenburn. They continue to run as a tea plantation and boutique retreat.
Glenburn is a place of outstanding natural beauty, home to a plethora of flora and fauna, including fruit trees, wildflowers, rare birds and insect life, including important pollinators such as honeybees. As well as preserving Glenburn’s ecological values, the Prakash family run the estate with ethical practices front and centre. Workers employed in the garden have full access to healthcare and education, and the estate’s code of conduct promises to uplift the lives of local people and produce fair, ethical and clean teas.
If you love this Indian white loose leaf tea
One of the most eagerly anticipated times of year on the Indian tea calendar is the spring release of the first flush Darjeelings. Our tea tasters have sourced some of the district’s best for you to try. Some exceptional examples of the 2021 season include Snowview, Margaret’s Hope, Selimbong and Upper Namring. Give them a try, and don’t forget to let us know what you think!
You can find out more about Darjeeling and what makes its flushes so special in our Tea Journal. For the full range of The Tea Makers of London white teas, browse our Tea Shop.
Can’t decide which Darjeeling to order? Sample six of our 2021 Darjeeling first-flush teas with a Discovery Pack.