“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.” — C.S. lewis. Even though any tea with a good book is enough to pass your leisurely time, hints of fragrant notes take the experience to another level. However, a hot cup of tea can also transform your daily work from home or study time into a leisurely activity. The Monsoon rain of May and June bestows great flavors to the teas that grow in the hills of Assam. Harvested during mid-June, this type of teas are called summer second flush, which is available in an array of aromas and tastes.
What Is A Second Flush Tea?
Unlike the first flush tea, the second flush teas are popular for their darker color. When brewed, it resembles the appearance of any typical Black tea. However, its leaves range from dark brown to grey in color. Its dark amber colour is often heavy with a rich aroma that can be nutty or have fruity fragrances. But what you should definitely try during the heavy rains showers is its aromatic version with a unique flavor that is commonly described as muscatel. Some other popular notes of these teas are almond, earthy, plum, chocolate rose and biscuit. As most of the notes ascribed with these are sweet in nature, these are great for drinking by themselves or with sweet cakes and biscuits.
The summer second flush tea variants available in India are the ones that grow in Assam. Though their basic constituents are very similar, they offer different experiences, be it in terms of colour, taste or fragrance.
Assam Tea: These offer a robust layered flavour with hints of notes like honey, wood and malt. The Assam summer second flush teas are on the darker side, with colours ranging from golden yellow to dark reddish. Though dark in colour, these are sweeter in taste than spring flush, which is why these taste best without milk and sugar.
Darjeeling Tea: Comprising only 1% of India’s total tea production, the summer second flush teas from Darjeeling are known for their fruity notes. Even the popular muscatel flavour comes from this region. These are on the lighter side of the colour, and yet again, you should not influence their taste with sugar or milk. Even though both are great on their own terms, if you are looking for a tea you will consume daily, the Assam variant is best for you. They are affordable and offer a richer texture with their wood-like flavour notes.
Best Way To Prepare And Have These Teas
Preparing these are relatively simple as these do not require any milk, cream or sweetening agents. These are through and through leisurely beverage as all you have to do is brew them in boiling water. Assam variants are ready within about 3 minutes, you would have o keep the second flush teas for another minute to get their signature dark hue. As far as the ideal way of having these go, there are no such hard and fast rules. However, these teas are great to have breakfast with, as their fragrant notes are known to provide calming energy in the morning.
So, if you are looking for the perfect beverage to have during your leisurely time, a cup of freshly brewed summer second flush tea is all you need. It will soothe both your stressed mind and your aching body. And obviously, they taste best when you drink them while reading your favourite book.