Everything Starts With The Soil
26 November 2015
Whilst the concept of soil, ‘terroir’ and how it effects taste and aroma is completely understood by those who enjoy wine the idea is often overlooked in tea.
But yet the as tea farmers ‘terroir’ is absolutely fundamental to our daily actions, with the particular character and quality of our finished teas inextricably linked to what nature has provided. Our art is to find the best aspect and drained soils to allow the tea bushes to flourish throughout the seasons, not always an easy job!
Over the years, both on our own farms and in conjunction with the Kenyan Tea Research Foundation we have developed different varieties of tea bush, some that are more drought resistant but offer lower productivity, some that grow well in more alkaline or acidic soils, some that exhibit stronger or brighter liquors when manufactured, such as Ejulu whose bright light green small leaves produce a very distinctive liquor. We also have our purple tea, unique to Kenya and superbly high in antioxidants. For each variety we try to select the best area on each farm to grow and whats so interesting is that as the tea bushes grow older, as with vines, they develop deeper and deeper roots that allow them to draw from the depths of the soil mineral elements, the very substance of each terroir and take on its characteristics. So a tea will taste from where it’s grown, something to saviour and enjoy!
As we move closer to the launch of our Loose Leaf Teabags and Loose Leaf Teas you’ll see that each of these teas is grown on a specific farm, carefully chosen by us with our experience of which variety grows best either on the high altitude ridge lines of Kapchorua, within the rich sun splashed fields of Changoi, Tinder’s lighting struck slopes or along the shaded forests of Tinderet. Each of our teas tells a story of where they are grown and each is unique.