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The Tea House Times Guest Blog featuring VICTORIA BISOGNO, El Club del Te

December 2014 Posts

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Tea in India by Victoria Bisogno

Sunday, December 14th 2014 @ 8:20 PM

In the Ramayana, one of Ancient India’s most important and influential religious works, possibly written in the 3rd century B.C., there are references to the use of tea as a medicine. But it was not until 1823 that the British developed the idea of cultivating tea in India.

When Mayor Robert Bruce, in charge of a garrison of the British army in Assam was offered an infusion made from a wild bush by some of the local people, he found that it tasted so similar to tea that he sent some leaves from the plant to be analysed in Calcutta.  It was found to be a local variety of the Camellia sinensis: the Camellia sinensis assamica.

 

The British East India Company established trial plantations of tea plants in Assam, brought in some Chinese tea makers to teach them how to make both black and green tea and discovered that they could make black tea that was judged by the London brokers to be as good as any tea coming out of China. The first shipment of British–made Assam black tea was shipped from India to London in 1838 and was sold in the London tea auction of January 1839.  Once they had proved that they could produce their own tea, the British started manufacturing large amounts of mainly black tea in India: in Assam, Darjeeling and Nilgiri.

 

Currently India is one of the mayor tea producers of the world.

 

~ Victoria Bisogno, El Club del Té

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VICTORIA BISOGNO is founder and President of El Club del Té.  Victoria is an engineer and she has spent her entire life intimately connected with tea. Founder of El Club del Té (The Tea Club), the first organization in Spanish speaking countries dedicated to promoting tea culture, she teaches tea blending, sensory evaluation of teas and the Certified Tea Sommelier course among other tea related topics. Author of the Tea Sommelier Handbook together with Jane Pettigrew, she is a speaker at World Tea Expo, she writes for specialized magazines and newspapers and she has created Charming Blends, a teashop dedicated to specialty teas. With El Club del Té (The Tea Club) she performs academic and recreational activities based in Buenos Aires, Madrid, Barcelona and also online.

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