Tea drinkers around the world love Assam tea, and they sure drink a lot of it! In fact, you’ll often find the terms ‘Indian tea’ and ‘Assam tea’ being used interchangeably. Half of India’s tea – or a whopping 1.3 billion pounds every year – comes from the region of Assam. And the global demand for it is so huge that only a tenth is consumed locally. The rest goes into crafting a variety of popular black teas and flavored tea blends. But why all the love for this Indian black tea?
Why is Assam tea famous?
The secret behind Assam black tea’s fame is its iconic taste – full-bodied, robust, and uniquely malty.
How does it get that way?
Loose-leaf Assam teas are produced from a specific variety of the Camellia Sinensis plant indigenous to the region. These plants grow in hot, humid lowlands along the banks of the mighty Brahmaputra, where torrential rain and greenhouse-like conditions bring a malty flavor to their leaves.
There are two harvesting seasons in Assam. The first harvest (flush) happens during the spring, while the second flush delivers a more flavorful summer tea.
Best Assam tea
What is the best Assam tea to make a perfect cup?
When shopping for the best Assam black tea around, consider loose leaf single estate teas. As far as Assam tea goes, this is the cream of the crop. Produced from a single tea garden and often processed, packed, and shipped directly from the source, single estate teas are the freshest, highest quality, truly the best loose leaf Assam teas available on the market. Here’s a great option for you:
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What is Mangalam Assam tea?
Sourced at the world-famous Mangalam estate, this Indian black tea is a must-try for the lovers of Assam. Mangalam Assam teas are made with an Assamica hybrid of the tea plant that produces large leaves and many golden tips. The resulting black teas are notable for their full-bodied profile with a distinctive malty flavor. They make for an invigorating, perfect cup of breakfast brew. A splash of milk would enhance the sweet and toasty notes of your Mangalam Assam.
WHERE TO BUY THE BEST ASSAM TEA ONLINE?
One of our go-to places online to stock up on Assams is Vahdam Teas.
Vahdam Teas Online Store
The quality of their products is superb, shipping is fast and customer service is excellent, no wonder that Vahdam Teas have been featured in Oprah's Favorites. All teas are cleaned, processed and packed packed directly at the source and then air shipped to local fulfillment center in USA. Orders shipped by Fedex for quick delivery.
Use our exclusive coupon MADTEA15 for a 15% discount storewide (2 uses per user).
Here is more buying options.
Bold, powerful black tea from the Assam region of India. A deep, burgundy-red cup and roasted grain aroma, malty rich flavor with notes of raisins. Pungent but smooth astringency, making this tea an ideal cup to pair with milk and sugar. This outstanding Assam comes from a favorite garden of ours, Mangalam Estate.
Black Tea. From the Assam region of the flat lands of Northern India rises this incredibly smooth malty tea with lots of character. It steeps a rich golden infusion and may be steeped multiple times. For the coffee lover looking to expand his or her horizons, this is the solution.Caffeine Content: Medium Rich, Malty, Vegetal
Green Assam Tea
A rare green tea from Assam, India. Its deep green leaves are replete with fragrance of flowers and hits of smoke. The infusion is light, floral and a bit smoky. As it cools, fruity notes of plum and apricot come to the fore, along with hint of grassiness. Overall, a complex and very enjoyable cup. A worthy addition to the Indian green tea pantheon. Please give it a t..
Mangalam Gold Summer Black Tea
Assam's Mangalam estate is another of our must-haves every summer. The entire estate has been planted with clonal tea bushes. Their orthodox teas are a benchmark in golden tippy orthodox Assam teas. They are mellow but make a flavorful malty cup.
Smoky Assam Souchong Black Tea
A specialty blend, from the divine region of Assam, soaked in an enticing aroma of Oakwood smoke. A malty Assam summer tea sourced from aged chi-nary bushes that results in a lively cup! The blackish-brown long leaves are loosely hand-rolled and are interspersed with treasured buds. It carries the impressive aroma of black tea cured in oak wood smoke...
Assam Enigma Second Flush Black Tea
This exquisite, best-selling Second Flush is a crown of Assam teas, handpicked from the choicest estates in Assam and blended in-house by our skilled master blenders. A delectable malty cup of tea featuring hints of wood and the fresh aroma of a ripe fruit. The brownish-black leaves are small, lightly-rolled, and are interspersed with short flakes and ample golden tips...
Organic Breakfast Tea Bags
A robust blend of premium organic black tea leaves from Assam and Southern India, punctuated with a hearty finish. Aromatic and brisk, it is great black or with milk and sugar or a touch of honey.
Assam T.G.F.O.P. Tea Organic
An Organic Assam Black Tea from the mountains of southern India. T.G.F.O.P. is a very high grade tea, containing many lighter golden tan tips of the tea adding to the depth of taste. This tea has a full-bodied, rich malty flavor and makes a delicious breakfast tea. Milk and sugar complement this tea well.
Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe (T.G.F.O.P.) is FOP with a larger amount of tips. When these tips are in abundance, the terms 'Tippy and Golden' are attached to FOP, thus making it Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe. TGFOP is the top grade of OP tea.
Organic Full Bodied Black Tea, Malty Assam
A dark, smooth, full-bodied brew with malty, caramel undertones. Pairs well with milk and sugar.
Grown at a certified organic tea garden in Assam.
Organic Coconut Assam Tea Bags
Bold Assam tea and toasty coconut create a sweet and nutty blend.
The history of Assam tea
All of India’s tea chronicles usually go back to the same source. 150 years ago, the British were on a quest to end China’s tea monopoly, and they tried a bunch of different ways to grow tea in India. They didn’t have to do much in the northeastern state of Assam, though. Because as it turned out, a variety of the tea plant (later named Camellia Sinensis Assamica) was already growing in the wild there. It didn’t take long for the government to realize that the climate and soil conditions here were ideal for tea cultivation. Today, over 300,000 hectares of land in Assam are covered in tea plantations, and a fifth of the state’s population is involved in tea production.
What does Assam tea taste like?
This is a strong, bold, malty, full-bodied, “breakfast” type of black tea. Assam tea drinkers appreciate its “smooth, rich flavor and feel” with a “honey-like sweet aftertaste.” “If you want a BLACK tea, this is it!” they say. “Strong yet delicate,” it’s usually “a great tea to try with a touch of milk.”
Consider loose leaf Assam black tea as an alternative to coffee: it would allow you to substantially cut down on caffeine while still providing you with the necessary pick-me-up you need in the morning. It’s strong enough to start off the most challenging of days and refuel you all the way through.
Assam makes a great base for some of the most popular and flavorful tea blends in the world, including English Breakfast and Masala Chai teas.
More tea, please!
Isabelle is a freelance writer, self-taught tea nerd, and tea blending enthusiast. She is a herbalist with a strong interest in Ayurveda. Each year Isabelle travels extensively, returning with tea samples from around the world. She is a big fan of handmade teaware and Japanese green teas.