Updated: Feb 1, 2020
Blue Mountain tea is reknown for its deep coloured brews and crisp fragrant flavour. However tea from this region was nearly lost after the collapse of the USSR.
The Blue Mountains are another name for the the Nilgiri region in Southern India. The first tea plants were planted in 1832 by the British but these early attempts were not commercially successful and the region was slower to take on the crop compared to other tea growing parts of India. It wasn't until 1875 that the first commercial tea gardens started to appear.
The CTC mass produced teas were the main output for Nilgiri, and in particular it became the main supplier of tea for the USSR who's drinkers weren't particularly fussy about quality. This damaged the reputation of the region and when the USSR collapsed the knock on effect was an economic meltdown for the tea producers in the early 90's. Demand for teas had collapsed and the price farmers had gone as low as 3p per kilo. The Blue Mountains have since been slowly rebuilding their reputation. More focus went on the quality of the tea and farms also started producing orthodox teas. The ability to sell their tea for a better price improved and some high end orthodox teas were selling for over £400 a kilo. Our own Bright Blue Mountain tea is a GBOP cut which contains golden tips, known for their superior flavour. Looks can be deceiving with this dark copper brew, it actually has a surprisingly brisk smooth flavour with no bitterness.