An open letter to those ready to turn over a new leaf, from Dilmah founder and teamaker Merrill J. Fernando, and his sons Dilhan and Malik:
It begins inside Nine scientifically-proven, thought-provoking Limited Edition teas for the year
We selected nine elegant single estate teas. Our focus was on teas to relax the mind while inspiring thought and creativity. Tea can really do both; fresh tea is especially rich in an amino acid - L-theanine - which significantly increases activity in the alpha frequency band, relaxing the mind without inducing drowsiness. But tea is about great Taste, as well as natural Goodness, and so we matched the goodness in our teas with fragrance and taste that calm the way only Nature can.
As the prolonged monsoonal rains dispersed, and the clouds cleared, we produced very small batches of each of seven winter black teas and two seasonal Green Teas, handpicked and handmade in December 2019 – freshness is critical for good aroma, taste and natural antioxidant goodness in tea. They were grown and produced on six Dilmah Tea Gardens, some wiry, others shotty, some curled and other not.
A journey that takes 2 – 5 minutes in spring water
Each is a special tea, to be carefully brewed using filtered or spring water – 4 – 5 minutes for the black teas and 2 – 3 minutes for our Emerald Hills Green Teas – stirring occasionally to ensure that the aroma, flavour and goodness are released. These teas are gentle, and not aggressive, but complex and individualistic.
Backed by science
The fragrance and taste of great tea makes the perfect companion. There is a special satisfaction in knowing that your brew is crafted by none other than Nature, with every subtle aroma, flavour and the powerful antioxidants in each tea, being nurtured in the leaf by soil, sunshine, temperature and rainfall. Extracting that aroma, taste and goodness for your enjoyment requires the use of good water – filtered or spring water at pH6-7 with total dissolved solids less than 150ppm.
The family secret
We recommend that these very special teas are enjoyed without the addition of milk or sugar, although if you want to add a personal touch to your teas, that is also OK. Our advice is – keep it natural, use fresh ginger, lavender, mint leaf, cinnamon, a twist of lemon, orange or other fresh herbs, roots or fruit that would complement and not dominate the taste of the teas.
A special, curled pekoe made for the occasion, the leaf has a beautiful appearance and yields nearly full leaves when brewed. The liquor is bright and gently astringent, with an aroma that is reminiscent of the ocean, and herbal, seaweed and light citrus notes in taste. Best enjoyed without milk or sweetness.
Do try it!!