Thursday, 9 April 2009

The only tea plantations in Europe

This is the only place in Europe where tea can be grown. The Azores Islands. Middle of the Atlantic Ocean. The only tea factory and tea plantations in Europe.

Picking of tea leaves starts between April and September. Next there is a wilting - one hour-long rolling process that crushes the tea leafs, followed by fermentation, drying and packing.

Porto Formoso tea factory. Pekoe tea. Tea plantations.

The two existing factories: Gorreana and Porto Formoso produce three different types of black tea. Tea varieties are determined according to where on the bush the leaves are picked from: first there is a orange pekoe, the most flavored one, that comes from the bud and from the first and the youngest leaves. Then there is a pekoe, a less-flavored variety, derived from the second leaf and finally we have a Broken Leaf, the least aromatic of the three with less tannins, that is made from fragments of the remaining leaves.

At the end of the tour one can enjoy a cup of tea in a specially prepared tea-room.
So sit comfortably, grab your cap of tea and enjoy. Certainly you won't find a fresher tea anywhere else in Europe.

We visited the two tea factories during our second visit to São Miguel island. March 2009.



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tanthalos said...

doskonały blog, dodałem do obserwowanych:)

Anna said...

Maciek, the first photo is just surreal. Thanks for sharing. Anna :)

Anonymous said...

Hello, Yes We Visited the Tea Factory and Plantation Gorreana and the Ornamental Tea Garden in Porto Formoso. I loved both Tours, It was good to see that Gorreana still produces tea and porto formoso is just a place to drink tea and learn about azores tea history allthough they dont produce the tea they sale they but it from abroad, you would think they would serve Azores tea but maybe they are competing with Gorreana..either way I loved Gorreana's Azores Teas a great tour!

Anonymous said...

they have a beautiful site Thats why at Gorreana you see working machines and at porto formoso you dont, since they just have an ornamental garden and old machines from when it was Cha Faria e Maia in the 1920's - 1980's. Government subsadies were given to open it back up in 1998 to talk about azores tea history, while Gorreana has been producing tea in Azores for Europe Since 1883 Commercially! I love their teas!