One thing I really like about doing tea reviews is the chance to “visit”, at least in imagination, so many other countries. I had read about Gorreana Tea on World Tea News and had purchased some of their black tea, which I loved. Today, I am doing their green tea.
Gorreana has been in business since 1883, certainly the oldest European tea estate and until recently, the only commercial one. They are on the island of Sao Miguel, part of the Azores, off the coast of Portugal.
The dry leaves of their tea come in a ordinary teabag, but they have an outer one you can use instead, which I did, since I wanted to see what the tea looked like. It is a mix of chopped green leaves. There was no detectable aroma, which is no surprise as the sample is quite small. I brewed it for about 2 minutes with water about 175º. The liquor is an attractive medium old gold and smells a bit lemony, with a grassy edge to it. I liked the tea, but I can’t quite put a finger on how it tastes; a bit lemony, a bit like stainless steel, a tiny bit like fresh grass, with some residual sweetness. I am not sure that having it in a tea bag does it justice.
Gorreana has this to say:
Prized for centuries for it’s health benefits, the growing popularity of green tea around the world is largely in part to the continued scientific findings of the health benefits associated with real green tea consumption.
Gorreana’s single estate spring & summer picked organic green teas are grown on the island of Sao Miguel off the European coast. Our premium grown green teas indulges even the most sophisticated palates due to the high quality leaves, and rare organic farming methods in place at the Gorreana estate.Green tea is the earliest form of tea produced, and unlike black tea is not oxidized. Our leaves are picked fresh each season and are immediately steamed to prevent oxidation, following with rolling and drying of the delicate leaves to create the perfect cup of organic green tea, 125 years in the making. Trust you can taste since 1883.
As yes, I forgot to mention it is raised organically. I am always pleased to find this, as I think we live in what is really a very small world and we all need to take care of it. From the pictures, I can see that Gorreana does a lot of mechanical harvesting, but at least the raising of the tea is organic.
There is at least one other tea estate in the Azores, but to date, you will have to go there to buy their teas.