Darjeeling Discovery

July 19, 2012

Darjeeling Discovery: Thurbo Tea Estate

by Yoko Kumano

Tea estates in Darjeeling are very aware that organic sells. Some tea estates convert their whole operation into an organic one, while others simply can not afford the high costs that are needed to apply for certification. It takes about three years for inspectors to certify a tea estate as organic. But considering that the […]

July 12, 2012

Darjeeling Discovery: Castleton Tea Estate

by Yoko Kumano

Out of all the tea plantations I went to during my trip, Castleton seemed to have the most modern and well-kept facilities. The operation is large and the tea estate itself supports the livelihood of thousands of families. One of the defining characteristics of Castleton for me was the emphasis they put on “clonal teas.” […]

July 5, 2012

Darjeeling Discovery: Junpana Tea Estate

by Yoko Kumano

“What is different about the Junpana tea estate, from all the other tea estates in Darjeeling?” I asked BM Mudgil (manager of Junpana). To that he replied, “You will find out when you go there and experience it.” I knew the bullet points: established in 1899, elevation 2,500-5,500 ft, moves 75 tons of tea a […]

June 28, 2012

Darjeeling Discovery: Goomtee Tea Estate

by Yoko Kumano

Darjeeling reminded me of Hayao Miyazaki’s Laputa: Castle in the Sky. It is hidden within the thick cloak of fog and has an elevation of up to 8000 feet. As you approach Darjeeling from the small, but heavily populated Bagdogra aiport, the steep hills slowly reveal themselves. Looking down to the Junpana Tea Estate from […]