Is Palampur right for tea freakies?

#1 Oct 13th, 2010, 20:30
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  • Giepi is offline
#1
Hi,
I'm actually studying in Delhi for three months and it's the first time ever I visit India. Being a tea junkie I am quite disappointed by the scarcity of availability and differentiation of the tea offer here in India.
Don't get me wrong, I am quite pleased to drink masala chai in every corner, the problem is that there is ONLY masala chai. Being the biggest tea producer of world, I was figuring I would find here everywhere the finest Darjeeling, some unknown indian greens or even some oolongs or white teas. I was told that Palampur is the only place near Delhi where I can go to find some indian plantation, since I'm studying most of the week I can only travel in weekend, so Assam and Sikkim are out of my reach for the moment. Do you think that I would find Palampur the place for me? Is it possible to visit some plantation and buy directly from them? Is there any good tea house where I can just drink all the kind of teas they are producing there? Are they only making black tea? I'd like to call them, but the Lonely Planet just gives me a number to call, and they look like they have no internet website!
Is it good? Any nearby acceptable alternatives?

Thanks In Advance! ^^
#2 Oct 14th, 2010, 03:03
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  • Golghar is offline
#2
Here is a list of tea-auction centres in India. You can contact the centre at Amritsar for the Kangra Valley varieties. If you make the right kind of approach they might let you take part in a tea-tasting session.
#3 Oct 14th, 2010, 03:16
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  • malewitsch is offline
#3
Good Question, i've been wondering about that since i came back from india...
one of the biggest tea producer in the world, and all over the country, you only get masala chai...and even if you get some other tea, it will be in a place where tourists are and you get the same boring teabags like at home (only exception beeing the region around kangra valley, where i actually got to buy tea and then ordering some boiling water for making it myself....)
Same with coffee in kerala, they grow the stuff down there and all you get as instant....
somebody has an explanation for all that???
#4 Oct 14th, 2010, 12:45
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  • delhiwala is offline
#4
Palampur Cooperative Tea Factory should be good for you, they allow tours of the estate and you can buy tea from there.

Kangra tea is a speciality tea. The China leaf, gives a distinctive brew thatís honey gold in colour, with a sweet undertone and none of the astringency of Darjeeling teas. Kangra tea has more appeal for the Western palate as it is best when taken without milk or sugar. But as you already know by your experience of Masala chai, thatís a downside for local Indian markets.
I did not fully understand the dread term "Terminal Illness" until I saw Terminal 1 D of Delhi Airport.
#5 Oct 14th, 2010, 17:00
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#5
That's very interesting as I just love the "China leaf", instead of the assamic variety of the plant of tea. Do you know how can I contact any estate of the Kangra Valley? I'd like to go there Friday next week and I'd like to organize my trip beforehand
#6 Oct 15th, 2010, 16:06
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#6
It's quite disappointing. I'm trying to call and check if it's opened next friday, but can't seem to find a good number to call... I've found on my lonely planet the number 230220 that is too short to call... I noticed that talking about palampur it gives another number 01894 that I thought it could be a prefix. So I called the two number combined but... It was not the Palampur Tea Cooperative!

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