Nilgiri Frost Black Loose Leaf Tea
Coonoor, Tamil Nadu, India
Produced by the Tea Studio, a micro tea factory in Tamil Nadu part of an initiative set up by Indi Khanna – a previous winner of the International Tea Academy Lifetime Achievement Award at The Leafies. The Tea Studio is now run by his daughter and her team.
This exceptional tea is harvested during the winter frosts. The bushes are under just enough stress to produce compounds that give the tea a unique flavour profile and spring-like freshness. As it's lightly oxidised, it has some oolong-like characteristics while being floral and aromatic, with a barley sugar sweetness. Not unlike a Darjeeling. Beautiful.
Ingredients: Black tea (Camellia sinensis)
This variant is currently sold out.
profile of Indi Khanna
Indi Khanna, founder of the pioneering Tea Studio, has over 45 years of experience in the industry.
Indi Khanna has over 45 years' experience in the tea industry and is the founder of Tea Studio, a micro-factory in the Nilgiri Hills that pioneers sustainable, ethical and artisan tea production – and provides jobs in the local area. The Tea Studio is now run by Indi’s daughter Muskan, who leads an all-female management team, which is still highly unusual in the Indian tea industry.
Indi says, “Tea Studio is, to my knowledge, the only tea factory with a 100% female management team in the country. It was difficult and awkward in the beginning as there is still a lot of chauvinism in the Indian tea industry, but now Muskan is known as one of the best tea makers in the region.”
Indi also spends much of his time helping and consulting tea growers and producers around the world, travelling to tea farms and factories to share his unrivalled knowledge of tea manufacture with other tea enthusiasts and professionals.
Muskan Khanna heads up an all-female management team at Tea Studio.
“I have 48 years of experience in the tea industry and counting. And I’ve travelled the world to both learn about different types of tea manufacture and offer consultancy work, from tea-growing projects in Malawi to Dartmoor in England. For me, it’s not just about keeping pace with new trends and developments. I want to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to tea manufacture.”
For his contribution to the industry, Indi won the Lifetime Achievement Award at The Leafies 2022, the International Tea Academy Awards launched by the UK Tea Academy in partnership with Fortnum and Mason.
Indi Khanna accepts the UKTA Lifetime Achievement Award at The Leafies 2022.
read the leaves
step 1: leaves
For one cup, measure out 3 grams (around two tsp) into your teapot or brew mug.
step 2: water
Heat 250ml of water to 90°C (if you don’t have a thermometer, boil the kettle and leave to cool).
step 3: time
Pour your heated water over the leaves and steep for 3 minutes. Drink.
Nilgiri teas are some of the highest grown teas in the world – in some cases up to 8000 ft elevation.
During winter the mountain tea bushes are under just enough stress to produce unique and unusual flavour compounds. The frozen leaves and buds are harvested early in the morning and sent to the factory immediately, where the producers slowly defrost the leaves in a carefully-controlled environment. The result is a spring-like freshness similar to a first flush Darjeeling – with a barley sugar sweetness and aromatic floral tones. Simply outstanding.
Tea Studio's micro factory nestled in the stunning Nilgiri Mountain range in Tamil Nadu.
Just 5km from Coonoor, the Tea Studio sits at 1850m elevation and is nestled in the stunning Nilgiri Mountain range of South India’s Western Ghats in the State of Tamil Nadu. The Studio – or micro factory – is the brainchild of tea experts from three different continents, each with their own set of unique skills and expertise in tea growing and production. The Studio is committed to female empowerment in the region, and their small workforce are all women from the neighbouring villages.
The Tea Studio sources their leaves from tribal farmers who tend to tiny family tea farms (just ½ - ¼ acre plots) in the vicinity of the studio. While not certified organic, they don’t use any chemicals and work with nature, not against it, to produce exceptionally high quality leaf.
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