Ceylon New Vithanakande Silver Tips is an extremely well made black tea that comes from the New Vithanakande tea estate in Ratnapura, Sri Lanka. The ‘Silver Tips’ name comes from the appearance of the leaves as they feature silver or slightly golden tips, which signifies the high quality nature of this tea. It is a low-grown Sri Lankan Silver Tips, grade FBOPEXSP, or Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe Extra Special. While higher altitude teas are highly prized in Sri Lanka, lower altitude estates do produce some fantastic teas that have a fuller character, often full of exotic tropical notes.
The tea farmers in Sri Lanka have had a difficult recent past, with the government encouraging more farmers to switch to CTC (crush, tear, curl) methods of tea production in the 1990’s, trying to capture the huge CTC market. CTC tea is normally used to fill tea bags, so the move was away from quality and onto quantity. This switch from orthodox methods was a big failure as Sri Lankan teas could not compete with cheaper CTC teas from other large and the then up-and-coming CTC tea growing countries, such as India, Kenya and Malawi. This move also damaged the reputation and quality of Sri Lankan tea, resulting in many farmers choosing to eventually abandon CTC production in favour of orthodox methods of tea production. Now Sri Lanka is rightly regaining its status as a major exporter of high quality orthodox teas and there are more and more interesting and exciting producers of these Ceylon teas, such as this Ceylon Silver Tips from New Vithanakande tea estate.
The leaves of our Ceylon New Vithanakande Silver Tips black tea are neat, black and wiry with a distinctive silver and gold spine. The liquor produced is a very deep red colour with a light comforting aroma. It has a smooth flavour that is malty and mineral in character. The deep flavour is quite typical for Sri Lankan teas and is very appealing to those looking for a tea with a ‘British’ flavour profile. There are slightly malty and tangy notes of fruits and molasses. A pleasant level of astringency on the aftertaste completes this classic black tea.
This tea is best brewed with water at 90°C for 3-4 minutes and the leaves can be brewed around 2 times.
We also offer Ceylon NV Orange Pekoe black tea from New Vithanakande tea estate.