Tea from Nepal is very similar to the more expensive Darjeeling in its appearance, aroma and taste, with the same fruity flavor. It is separated into two categories: hand-rolled orthodox and CTC (crush, tear, curl). Orthodox is hand-rolled and much more expensive. CTC is cheaper and lower quality.
Where to buy
Good Nepalese teas can be difficult to find outside of the country. Some specialty tea shops or online vendors will have a tea or two from Nepal. If you are unsure where to begin, you can check out some of my recommendations below.
How to Prepare Nepal Black Tea
The preparation instructions given here are for loose leaf teas. For tea bags, you can just follow the instructions given on the box.
The ideal brewing temperature is 90-95ºC (194-205ºF), which is just below the boiling point. You can just boil the water using a simple stove-top kettle and then let it cool for 20 seconds.
If you plan on trying a lot of varieties of tea and/or coffee it might be worth it to invest in a water boiler/warmer or an electric kettle with a variable temperature setting. Personally, I recommend this Cuisinart kettle, because it has presets for every type of tea, so you always get the perfect temperature (or check here for a list of small electric kettles):
Nepalese tea can be brewed in a variety of vessels, but ideally you would use a ceramic teapot.
- Fill both the teapot and the cups about halfway with hot water to pre-heat them. Tilt them a bit so that the water creeps up the side and then rotate them so the insides get wet all the way around. Then pour the water out.
- Put 1 teaspoon of tea leaves into the teapot for every 8 oz. (236 ml) of water.
- Fill the teapot with 90-95ºC (194-205ºF) water.
- Place the lid on the teapot and let the tea steep for 3 minutes.
- Pour the tea into the teacups and enjoy your tea!
It can be a very difficult to find good tea from Nepal online. The best I’ve found is the Nepal Black Tea from Art of Tea. The problem is that it is often out of stock.
When it comes to Nepalese black tea, Amazon is actually the best place to find good quality varieties (assuming the Himalayan Quest is out of stock). The Himalayan Finest Flowery is my favorite and it’s surprisingly inexpensive. The Mahamosa Nepal Black Tea is another great option.