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Organic Darjeeling Makaibari Estate 1st Flush Black Tea

Purchase Options

113 servings, 27¢ per serving
38 servings, 39¢ per serving
6 servings
  • Description
  • Reviews
  • Steeping
  • Health

This organic loose tea from the 2014 first flush harvest is biodynamically farmed at the Makaibari estate in India's Darjeeling district. Established in 1859, Markaibari is the oldest estate in Darjeeling, where a strong commitment to sustainable farming prevails. This Fair Trade Certified organic Indian tea is made from the celebrated first harvest of early Spring, called the "first flush." Its light, floral cup has a fragrance all its own, with nuances of green and black tea. Our First Flush Darjeeling has a bright, lemony infusion with punchy astringency and classic first flush character. It is slightly flowery and has fruity notes of Muscat grape. We recommend infusing first flush Darjeeling organic black tea with a slightly lower water temperature and shorter steeping time than that of other black teas.

Ingredients: organic Indian black tea


Serving Size: one rounded teaspoon (1.25) per 8 oz cup of water

Staff Perspectives


Aubrey Says: Light and VERY dry - if there were bubbles, you'd practically have champagne!


Jeremy Says: The flavors of this black tea are so delicate that I don't recommend taking it with milk.

Write your own product review

  1. subtle taste

    Posted by Steve on 21st Jun 2012

    As other reviewers noted, the key is to follow the brewing directions; a bit lower water temperature and a shorter brew time produce a delicate tea that is well worth cost (and a true value at the coupon-reduced price). I look forward to next year's crop.

  2. deliciously floral

    Posted by Unknown on 13th Feb 2012

    it has refreshing, light floral flavor that is terrific for a late afternoon. the lack of bitterness makes it very easy to drink. a good 'relaxing' cup of tea.

  3. First flush

    Posted by Alan Babbitt on 26th Apr 2009

    I brewed the Makaibari Darjeeling 1st flush in the same way I brew most tea which is Gongfu style using a small clay pot and a short steeping time. I used 7 grams (about 2 tablespoons of this tea) in 200ml of water with a first steeping of 30 seconds. The resulting brew was a light golden color much lighter than you might expect for a "black" tea. The predominant aroma is almost exactly like beer wort clean and malty. The flavor is light and clean with all the characteristics of a typical darjeeling but much more delicate and subtle and with almost no astringency. The tea is almost all broken leaves so I was only able to get three steeping out of this before the astringency and bitterness asserted themselves. A very satisfying tea.

  4. brisk and peachy

    Posted by Jason Walker on 31st Mar 2009

    this 1st flush delivered briskness peach tartness and a hint that reminded me of floral wulong - Watch the full video review at walkerteareview.com

  5. Any way you brew it...

    Posted by Bill Edwards on 7th Nov 2008

    I bought a sample of this and brewed it before reading the suggestion to use a lower temp and shorter brew time. As a result the flavor was not subtle but smokey or toasted. I thoroughly enjoyed it! I did a second brew per instructions and this was more delicate. I sensed flavors that had me say "what is that I am tasting?" I gave up trying to identify it and just enjoyed it. The tea brews to a light bronze color unusual for a black tea.


We at Arbor Teas firmly believe that tea should be brewed to suit your personal taste. With that being said, here are some recommendations to get you started, but please remember you can make adjustments based on your own personal taste.

There are three main considerations when brewing tea: quantity of tea, water temperature and steeping time.


Quantity of tea: one rounded teaspoon (1.25) per 8 oz cup of water


Water temperature: we recommend infusing first flush Darjeeling black teas with a slightly lower water temperature and shorter steeping time than that of other black teas. Use water that has been heated until the first bubbles begin to rise from the bottom of the pot (195° F).


Steeping time: 3-4 minutes

Tip #1: Use fresh water whenever possible - water that has been sitting in your kettle overnight may impart a flat or stale taste to your tea. Be careful not to boil your water for too long. Over boiled water can sometimes impart an unwanted taste.

Tip #2: Keep in mind that brewing your tea for too long can extract undesirable bitterness from the leaves, so steeping time matters! For a stronger brew, don’t steep longer, just use more tea.

Learn more from our How To Guides on how to brew loose leaf tea, how to make iced tea, and how to make tea lattes. And don’t forget to check out our Eco-Brewing Tips, too!


There are five significant components found in all tea from the plant camellia sinensis: essential oils, which are the source of tea’s delicious flavor and aroma; polyphenols, which are antioxidants that provide the tea’s brisk flavor and many of its health benefits; phytonutrients, which are small amounts of vitamins, minerals, and amino acids including L-theanine (a very rare molecule that has been found in only three sources including camellia sinensis!) ; enzymes; and methylxanthines, which are a family of alkaloids that include caffeine. Each of these components work differently in the human body and a full description is best left to a medical journal. However, recent research exploring the potential health attributes of tea is leading many scientists to agree that tea, may contribute positively to a healthy lifestyle.

For a more in-depth discussion of Tea and Health Benefits check here.

For a more in-depth discussion of Tea and Caffeine check here.