What are the Different Types of Teas
Have you ever entered a tea shop and felt overwhelmed because of the hundreds of choices? You perused the tea caddies and read the labels. There are different types teas like Black and Green. On your left, you saw Yellow Teas. You did not even know such existed. In the end, you did not know what to get. You purchased the same tea that you know.
You are not alone. We have been there. So read on to learn more about teas without overwhelm.
You might have heard of BOBA, bubble tea or milk tea. But there is more to it beyond these trends. Let us go back to the basics.
Tea is the second most popular beverage in the world. It is an aromatic drink made by steeping leaves, herbs, or flowers in water.
Have you heard of the term “true tea”?
True teas come from Camellia Sinensis, the tea plant. If it does not come from it, you may categorize them as fruit teas or herbal infusions.
Nice to Know!
Camellia Sinensis is an evergreen shrub characterized by its serrated edges. Ist leaves are also glossy, oval, smooth, and rubbery. The leaves on our logo represent this. Check it out!
Who invented tea?
In 2737 BC, the father of ancient Chinese medicine, Emperor Shnenong was traveling with his soldiers. While resting under the tree, a leaf fell into his hot water producing a golden yellow color. He drank it and felt refreshed and energized. Later on, he demanded his soldiers to prepare this for their journeys.
While we can not confirm this legend, physical evidence shows its existence dating back to 206 BC during the Han Dynasty.
Who invented tea remains a magical mystery.
Which country produces tea?
The premium tea-growing regions are China, India, Sri Lanka, Japan, and Taiwan. They are also widely produced in Kenya, Nepal, and Korea. I also have met people who own tea plantations in the Netherlands, Germany, and the UK.
Who consumes the most tea?
China drinks about 1.6 billion pounds a year, making it the largest consumer in the world. Countries such as Turkey, Ireland, and the United Kingdom follow next.
What are the different types of teas?
There are only six types of teas. They are Black, Dark, Oolong, Green, White, and Yellow. As mentioned above, true teas strictly originate from the Camellia Sinensis plant.
If the true teas come from the same plant, why do they differ in color and taste?
That is a good question. Camellia Sinensis has many cultivars and varieties. They grow in different topographies. Some in higher elevation with less sunlight and more rain, while the others are not. All these could affect its properties like taste, appearance, and aroma. Tea processing also plays a vital role in making teas distinct from each other.
Here is an over view of the diferent types of teas. We will tackle them more in our future posts.
1. Black Tea
This is the most popular tea in the United Kingdom. Its leaves are black because of the extensive oxidation. It usually yields nutty, malty, or chocolatey flavors.
Have you heard of Darjeeling Tea? It is the Champagne of Teas. It can give you deep smokey to flowery flavor profiles depending on its season of harvest.
2. Dark Tea
Some refer to it as Pu erh or Pu’er. It undergoes true fermentation which gives you a unique and rich flavor.
3. Oolong Tea
It is most famous in Taiwan. It undergoes careful bruising unlike black tea.
4. Green Tea
In the early stage of tea processing, it goes undergoes de-enzyming, preventing oxidation. As a result, it retains its green color.
They usually give you a bright colored cup and refreshing taste. Some may even taste like the nori sheet from the sushi.
5. White Tea
It is a delicate tea that does not undergo any leaf manipulation. Hence, it maintains its appearance and clean taste profile.
6. Yellow Tea
Sweltering is a stage unique to the Yellow Tea. It results to a decrease in the green color.
From its ancient origins until the modern times, tea shows its unique yet flexible characteristics. The possibility is endless, making tea a magical beverage with a lot of history.
Tune in next week for more interesting facts about tea, mental health, and wellness.
Louise, Your Tea Fairy (Certified Tea Specialist)