We are proud of the meticulous approach to our tea tasting and selection which ensures that only the best leaves are used to make our exquisite blends. We have full confidence in our dedicated selection process and we know that the depth of our tea taster’s expertise is key to the delivery of our unrivalled taste.
Our tea is bought in Mombasa, home to the largest port in East Africa and the world’s largest tea export auction. Every Tuesday, over £10 million worth of tea is traded in Mombasa each week.
“£10 million worth of tea is traded in Mombasa each week.”
It is here in Mombasa that our tea tasters truly make the difference and ensure that our blends are consistently of the highest quality.
Our tea tasters taste up to 750 teas a day and out of all these teas usually only around 6, out of the nearly 4000 presented at auction in Mombasa each week, would be considered a high enough quality to meet the Birchall standard and be eligible for a Birchall blend. It’s this dedication to taste and uncompromising position on quality, which really sets us apart.
“Our tea tasters taste up to 750 teas a day.”
To identify a superior tea taste takes years of experience and honing of the palette. Our tea tasters dedicate up to 5 hours to tea tasting a day and it takes up to 5 years, or roughly one million cups, for a tea taster to truly develop their tea tasting skills and be eligible to become a Birchall tea taster.
One of our greatest tea tasters is Ed Kooyman, a charismatic and iconic figure within the East African tea world who has over 40 years experience in the tea industry and epitomises the passion and dedication we have to creating perfect blends.
Finally one other important aspect to the tea selection process is the speed of the packing of our teas in order to seal in the flavours and maximise taste.
“Our teas are packed far quicker than industry standard to preserve our signature full flavour.”
As soon as our delicious blended teas are selected we preserve the full flavour by packing our teas within 8-12 weeks of picking. This is against an industry standard of around 4-6 months and allows us to maintain the high quality taste you enjoy today.
A guide to the high quality ingredients we use in each of our teas and infusions.
Our black teas are all sourced exclusively from the finest tea estates across East Africa.
Our pursuit of perfection has been instilled in us through five generations of the Graham family.