In Darjeeling, some very experienced planters act as mentors

In Darjeeling, some very experienced planters supervise a number of plantations. This is the case with Anil Jha, for example, or Gopal Somani, pictured here in the company of Rajesh Pareek, Manager of Puttabong Tea Estate and Ravi Jakhmola, Manager of North Tukvar Tea Estate.

Gopal fulfils this role of mentor brilliantly.

Posted in Country : India by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags :

Rain in Darjeeling

After several days of fine weather, the rain has returned, incessantly, in Darjeeling. Day and night. Heavy rain – without a break. Sometimes accompanied by strong winds and hail. With rain like this, nobody can produce good tea because the leaves grow too quickly.

Luckily, just as the rains started I bought three incredible batches: Puttabong Clonal Queen DJ232, Puttabong Kakra Muscatel DJ223 and North Tukvar Delmas Bari DJ101.

Posted in Country : India by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : ,

Start of the “second flush” harvest in Darjeeling

For the past two nights it has rained in Darjeeling and the surrounding area. By early morning, the sky is clear and the first rays of sun fall on the wet ground.

It is the ideal weather for “second flush” teas as the harvesting begins.

Posted in Country : India, Places I like in Darjeeling by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags :

Serving tea in a glass

In China, it is customary to prepare certain teas by steeping them directly in a large glass. You then watch the leaves unfurling in the hot water as they rise and descend, appearing to dance…

It’s a simple yet joyful spectacle, and the perfect prelude to the tasting itself.

Posted in Country : China by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags :

The different faces of China

People talk a lot about how China is modernising, and it’s true that the country has developed at an incredible rate over the past 30 years. Nonetheless, nothing delights me more than to travel around China’s countryside and small towns. Taking a detour down a cobbled backstreet, I came across some villagers. They sit on their doorstep, a bowl of noodles in one hand and a pair of chopsticks in the other, and chat away for hours. This is the more gently-paced side of China.

Posted in Country : China by François-Xavier Delmas

The author

François-Xavier Delmas is a passionate globetrotter. He’s been touring the world’s tea plantations for more than 20 years in search of the finest teas. As the founder of Le Palais des Thés, he believes that travelling is all about discovering world cultures. From Darjeeling to Shizuoka, from Taiwan to the Golden Triangle, he invites you to follow his trips as well as share his experiences and emotions.

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