China Teas

Statue of Emporer Shen Nung - Silver Tips Tea Online Tea ShopLegend has it that Emperor Shen Nung was strolling through his garden, drinking his usual cup of boiled water, when a leaf from a nearby bush fell into this cup.  This was in 2737 B.C.  He was not only pleased with its taste but with early knowledge of herbal medicine, soon declared it to be medicinal drink.

In the sixteenth century B.C., the Taoist philosopher Lao-tzu also mentions tea in his great travels.  It is a fact that by 500 B.C., the people of Asia were drinking tea.  The first tea practices were primitive - boiling raw green leaves in water - resulting, no doubt in a bitter, nasty tasting drink.  Although some historians credit...

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 Feb 14, 2019  |  Written by Anupa Mueller

Durgi - Tea Plucker at Makaibari

As you wind up the Pankhabari road towards Makaibari Estate in Darjeeling, you are mesmerized by the immense beauty stretching all around you. Steep hills lined with green tea bushes, women plucking leaves, winding trails through tea plantations and bamboo trees everywhere. The romance of the area fills the air. You can imagine living out your days here surrounded by the serenity.  As you enter Makaibari territory, you notice everyone greeting you with smiles as you drive by.  This is a couple of years ago and I am with Rajah Banerjee, 4th generation owner and his wife, Srirupa, my sister.  We are family and so are all of Makaibari's workers.  Some have been there all their lives.

Durgi (pictured above) is no exception.  She...

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 Nov 01, 2018  |  Written by Anupa Mueller

Chai - A Feel-Good Drink

Chai is like a cup of cocoa – comforting, warm and relaxing.   In summer, it’s a tall cold glass on a hot day, a perfect alternative to a milk shake. The ideal Chai should be rich, creamy with the fully developed taste of Tea, Milk & Spices.  It shouldn’t be too watery or sugary-sweet.  Often this is what you find...

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 Oct 16, 2018  |  Written by Anupa Mueller

October is Fair Trade Month

You’ve probably all seen these labels on products in the grocery store and in specialty markets:  Fair Trade, Fair for Life, World Fair Trade, Fair Trade Federation.  What they have in common is a focus on the worker with the aim to promote equitable trade. It seeks to help producers in developing countries and covers coffee, cocoa, tea, wine, sugar, bananas, flowers and even handicrafts. It has 4 key goals:

  • To pay farmers a decent, living wage.
  • To create direct trade links to farmers, bypassing exploitative middlemen.
  • To provide access to affordable credit.
  • To promote sustainable practices, such as organic farming, that help protect the environment.

In the tea industry, Makaibari Tea Estate was used as a model in the early 1990s to test and develop fair...

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 Sep 30, 2018  |  Written by Anupa Mueller

Makaibari's Intrepid Manager - Mr. Das

 Mr. Das Makaibari Tea Estate - Silver Tips Tea Online Tea Store

The title, Manager, Tea Estate, seems so unassuming.  In actual fact though, the Manager of a Tea Estate is, in equal parts, king, champion, shepherd, COO and tea master.  At most tea gardens in India, the highest ranking person is The Manager.  He wields absolute authority and is the arbiter of quality and taste.  At Makaibari, with the beginning of the 2018 season, Mr. Sanjay Das took over the mantle of Manager, for the first time, without Rajah Banerjee's daily guidance.  Rajah, 4th generation owner of Makaibari, stepped away as Chairman as of March 2018.  

Mr. Sanjay Das Compost Pile - Silver Tips Tea Online Tea Store

Mr. Das learned from the best. Although he has over...

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 Aug 29, 2018  |  Written by Anupa Mueller
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