Pure Ceylon tea products have been renowned for over a century as one of the best teas the world has to
offer, thanks to the high quality of pure Ceylon tea. Pure Ceylon tea is famous for its versatility
as well as the diversity and individuality of its flavour and strength.
Ceylon Tea Estates and Regions
Most Ceylon tea estates are situated at elevations from 2,000 to over 6,000 feet.
Ceylon tea estates are located in the hilly landscape of Sri Lanka and are blessed by
the lush, verdant environment they reside within. Ceylon tea leaves are picked all year
round with the finest teas gathered from late June to the end of August in the eastern
parts, and from February to mid-March in the west.
Ceylon tea is not a single product but a range of Ceylon tea types produced in diverse and
distinct climatic zones of Sri Lanka. The six main tea-producing areas are: Galle; Ratnapura; Dimbula;
Uva; Kandy, the low region near the ancient royal capital; and Nuwara Eliya, the highest
area that produces the finest teas. In addition, there are a further 38 sub districts which
contain single gardens producing unique varieties of pure Ceylon tea. The connoisseur
certainly has a Ceylon tea product for any mood or occasion.
The type of Ceylon tea produced by the main Ceylon tea estates and regions
Galle: Pure Ceylon tea from Galle has regular-sized, well-produced leaves. Brewing
gives an amber-gold appearance, a scented aroma and smooth subtle taste.
Galle tea tip: Drink with
milk for a lovely afternoon tea.
Ratnapura: Lower quality tea that is generally used in Ceylon tea products that
blend different Ceylon tea types. Pure Ratnapura Ceylon teas have a slightly sweet aroma and give a smooth,
Ratnapura tea tip: Drink with a little milk.
Dimbula: The best tea comes in the dry months of January and February. Dimbula Ceylon tea is noted for their
strength, body and powerful aroma. The exquisite taste is almost oaky. Dimbula Ceylon tea tip:
A great afternoon tea, best with milk.
Uva: The best tea is harvested from June to September and produces a distinctive mellow flavour.
Pure Ceylon tea from Uva is copper-coloured and has a very smooth, pronounced taste with a wonderful aroma.
Uva tea tip: A fine morning of day-time tea to be drunk with milk.
Nuwara Eliya: Noted as the best Ceylon tea product, or the "champagne" of pure Ceylon tea. Nuwara Eliya
Ceylon tea products give a rich, golden brew with an exquisite smooth taste and a delicate aroma.
Nuwara Eliya tea tip: Best with little, or no, milk.
Ceylon Tea Types
Ceylon tea products are generally made with black tea, but Ceylon tea estates
have been experimenting with both green and oolong teas. Some Ceylon tea estates
also produce silver tip white tea that gives a very pale straw-coloured liquor and
should be drunk without milk.
Black Ceylon Tea Types: More oxidized than other varieties, it is generally
stronger and has a crisp aroma reminiscent of citrus.
Green Ceylon Tea Types: Made from unfermented leaves and contain high concentration of antioxidants.
Ceylon green teas are full-bodied with a pungent malty to nutty flavour.
Silver tip Ceylon Tea Types: Highly prized with a significantly higher price than other tea types. Silver tip
tea is grown, harvested and rolled by hand with the leaves dried and withered in the sun rather than by machinery.
Silver tip tea products give a golden-coppery brew and have a delicate flavour with notes of pine and honey.
Ceylon Tea Facts
- Ceylon Tea Fact 1: Teas from the highest regions in Sri Lanka are described as the 'champagne' of Ceylon teas
- Fact 2: Black tea leaves, a speciality of Ceylon tea products, are richer than fruits and
vegetables in antioxidants such as flavomoids and polyphenols.
- Fact 3: 4kg of tea leaves are needed to make 1kg of black tea
- Fact 4: One tea plant will produce around 70kg of pure black Ceylon tea per year.
- Fact 5: A tea plant in Sri Lanka takes 4 years to mature and will then produce Ceylon tea for at least 50 years.
- Fact 6: Ceylon tea leaves are divided into two groups for grading: Leaf grades are Orange
Pekoe (O.P.), Pekoe (Pek.) or Souchong (Sou.) or; Broken grades are Broken Orange Pekoe (B.O.P.),
Broken Orange Pekoe Fannings (B.O.P.F.), Dust (D.) or Organic Tea.