Tea (rec.drink.tea) Discussion relating to tea, the world's second most consumed beverage (after water), made by infusing or boiling the leaves of the tea plant (C. sinensis or close relatives) in water.

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Old 16-01-2006, 01:07 AM posted to rec.food.drink.tea
Aloke Prasad
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Default Assam tea in the news


Tea festival's missing ingredient
By Rajan Chakravarty
BBC News, Jorhat, Assam

The plucking season has just finished in the tea gardens of the north-east
Indian state of Assam.
To mark the event, a unique tea tourism festival was hosted in the town of
Jorhat, 310km (194 miles) from Assam's main town of Guwahati, to woo foreign
tourists in the area and revive the mystique of Assam tea, once known as the
finest quality tea in the world.

J Syamala Rao, Jorhat's deputy commissioner, said it was not the first such
festival - but it was being held on a grand scale.

With an eye towards the lucrative Western tourist market, the Assam
government and tea planters in Jorhat gave the visitors a glimpse of life
during the heydays of the British Raj, when Assam tea was the favoured
beverage of the English aristocracy.

Beautiful colonial-era bungalows, set amid verdant tea gardens, gave 21st
century tourists a taste of life that existed in the tea gardens around
Jorhat almost two centuries ago.

But one disappointment was the Indian government's failure to find the
descendants of the Scotsmen who first brought tea to this part of the world.

Robert C Bruce and his brother Charles, in the employ of the British East
India Company, are credited with bringing tea to Assam.

The tea plant was growing in the wild in the jungles of Assam way before the
commercial production of tea started in India in the 1830s.

The local Singpho tribes people were known to consume tea leaves as a
vegetable along with garlic.
Some of the Singphos drank the brew after dipping it in boiled water.

According to historical records, Robert C Bruce first discovered tea plants
in the wild near Jorhat with the help of a Singpho tribal chief in 1823.

etc etc.

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