Anything worth getting from India?


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Anything worth getting from India?

Postby sygyzy » Apr 23rd, '07, 18:34

A colleague will be visiting India (southern states) in a few weeks. Is there anything worth bringing back, tea related or otherwise?

Thanks.
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Postby wanna-be buddha » Jun 11th, '07, 12:01

There's plenty worth bringing back. As far as tea goes, single-estate Indian blacks fetch some (deservedly) high prices, and are excellent cuppas if you're a fan of bold, dark tea. Darjeeling is sort of the quintessential Indian tea (at least to most Western drinkers), and it's got that musty, muscatel flavor that many people adore.

If you're interested in more than just tea, the list of things "worth bringing back" is way too long to discuss here.
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Postby Chip » Jun 11th, '07, 12:34

The southern states include Assam. Darjeeling is in the north of course.

I would be curious what is available domestically in India since much of their tea production is for export. For instance, I wonder how much Darjeeling is even available in southern India and what quality it is. My guess is that most of the best of Darjeeling is bought up by large exporters and brokers and never is seen domestically in India, especially in the south.

Because of this, I wonder if it is even worth trying to bring tea back from India, when so much good Darjeeling is already here.
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Postby wanna-be buddha » Jun 11th, '07, 14:16

chip wrote:The southern states include Assam. Darjeeling is in the north of course.


Oops, you got me there.

You raise a good point about the domestic availability of fine teas in India, Chip. According to a few sites I trawled, India has the highest annual rate of tea consumption, but its per capita consumption is low compared to, say, the UK and Ireland. I don't have a firm enough grasp of economics to comment on what that means, but I have a feeling it supports Chip's point. Perhaps the bulk of India's tea is consumed domestically by the wealthier portion of society, due to the comparatively high cost of domestic tea.
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