American President, Mr. Bush and Darjeeling Tea

No visit to India is complete unless one gets to see Taj Mahal in all its splendour — and sips a cup of fine Darjeeling tea!

The same goes for the President of the United States of America and his delegation as well.
In their first ever trip to India, Mr Bush and the US First Lady may have missed the Taj (Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh assured Mrs Bush a trip to the Taj in her next visit) but Darjeeling tea was never far from them.

At the lunch he hosted for the couple yesterday, the Prime Minister made sure that both Mr Bush and his wife got a chance to savour at least one of the country’s bests tea flavours. And it indeed was invigorating — the taste of the Darjeeling tea that rounded off the lunch.

Whether Mr Bush, who is reputed to be a teetotaller, sipped the brew remains unknown, but it once again proved that Darjeeling tea surely represents one of the proud facets of India in the eyes of America.

The news made tea officials in Darjeeling happy. “It is nice to know that President Bush was served Darjeeling tea. The reputation of the fine tea produced in these hills allowed it to be a part of the menu. We are happy,” said Darjeeling Tea Association secretary Mr Sandeep Mukherjee.

Despite all these developments, there is serious apprehension that Darjeeling tea may lose its reputation in spite of the Hills producing around nine million kg tea every year. Over 40 million kg tea is sold in the market as Darjeeling tea. The mathematical mismatch between production and sales remains a mystery, concedes industry experts.

Source > The Statesman