PROCESSING AT GOOMTEE

Darjeeling Tea leaves are processed in the traditional "Orthodox" way. The inherent sensitive nature sensitive nature of the finely plucked, green leaf responds best to gentle treatment. Although differing leaf varieties require intricate variations in processing, the stages undergone are uniform.

Once the leaf reaches the factory, it is withered. The object is to evaporate moisture from the leaf slowly over a period of 14 to 16 hours. The leaf becomes limp so as to withstand twisting and rolling under pressure without crumbling

Liquor characteristics also begin to develop following physical and chemical changes within the leaf structure. The green leaves are segregated according to type and spread evenly on wire mesh screens fitted over specially designed troughs which resemble very long wooden boxes. Each trough is an air chamber which enables fresh dry air to be passed in a regulated manner through the green leaves till the desired "wither" is achieved. 65% of the water content is removed from the leaf at this stage.

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