Tea is the most consumed beverage after water, and Black tea is the most consumed among teas, leaving Green tea in the second place but far from Black, but nowadays we have access to much more than just Black and Green retail teas.
Black, Green, White, Chai, Oolong are some of the options, and It can get a bit confusing with so many different types. Let´s summarize it here so we can all learn about what types of teas nature has given us and how we have processed and mixed them.
All types of tea, except herbal, are brewed from the dried leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. The level of oxidation of the leaves determines the type of tea.
This popular type of tea is made from Camellia sinensis leaves and buds that have not undergone the same withering and oxidation process used to make oolong teas and black teas.
Some of the main benefits of drinking green tea are cancer prevention, weight control, cholesterol reduction, and part of this comes from the fact that its leaves are not oxidized and thus they contain all the antioxidant power.
Oolong is only partially oxidized after the fresh leaves are plucked and withered. Before the leaves are fully cured, a quick drying process will maintain the flavor and aroma elements of the green leaf and combines them with black tea characteristics that arise from the partial curing. Oolong has less caffeine than black tea, but a bit more than green teas.
White tea is made from the young, unfurled leaf tips of Camellia sinensis. The young leaves and buds are covered with soft, silvery white hairs, and from this characteristics we get its name, White tea. White teas are generally uncured in the style of green teas and are similarly very low in caffeine.
Herbal TeasBeverages brewed from herbs (or combinations of herbs) other than Camellia sinensis are technically "tisanes” but are usually referred to as "herbal teas." The herbs are blended to create unique flavors with some desired health benefits. Herbal teas do not contain caffeine because they do not contain Tea leaves and have other flavors that are not attainable with true tea. Herbal teas are popular because they can be refreshing, calming, invigorating or just pure flavor.
The name Chai is just the Hindi word for “tea”, which comes from “cha” 茶, the Chinese word for tea. In this case, the Hindi term chai means a mix of spices steeped into a tea-like beverage. Recipes for chai vary across continents, but the traditional ingredients of a spiced tea blend usually include black tea mixed with strong spices, like cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and ginger. The spiced tea mixture is typically brewed strong with milk and sweetened with sugar or honey, and this is exactly our recommended preparation for our Beauty Chai Tea, as Latte with milk and sweetened with honey.
Usually Chai teas come from the CTC production method (Cut-Tear-Curl), where Black tea leaves are run through a series of cylindrical rollers.
Ayurvedic teas are traditional herbal teas served in Ayurveda medicine. It is the key component of Ayurveda to help people attain health, wellness, and vitality. Ayurvedic tea has three types — Vatha tea, Pitha tea, and Kapha tea.
Our All-Natural Detox tea is a Vatha fantastic mix.
Black tea is the most popular Tea in the world and it also comes from Camellia sinensis, but it is more oxidized than green, oolong and certainly more than white tea. Because of this, in most cases Black tea will be stronger in flavor than the other types of teas.
For black tea there are two main varieties used by the main producers, a Chinese variety called Camellia sinensis var. sinensis, and a large leaves plant variety, Camellia sinensis var. Assamica.
Tea grading is based on the size of the leaf and types of leaves included in the tea. Leaf size is an important quality factor, but it is not by itself a guarantee of quality.
Teas are often designated as OP or FOP. These designations are part of the grading system used for whole leaf black teas and refer to the leaf size and amount of tip in the tea. Pekoe means teas picked as 2 leaves and a bud. OP, or Orange Pekoe, is a full-leaf tea with no tip or buds. FOP, or Flowery Orange Pekoe, is a longer leaf than an OP and has some buds.
In general, the more whole the leaf is and the more buds it contains, the higher the grade of tea.
Black Tea Leaf Grades
|P||Pekoe||smaller, shorter leave than OP|
|OP||Orange Pekoe||long, thin, tightly rolled leaves|
|FOP||Flowery Orange Pekoe||longer leaf than an OP but not as tightly rolled|
|GFOP||Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe||FOP with some golden tips|
|TGFOP||Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe||GFOP with more golden tips|
|FTGFOP||Finest Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe||Better quality TGFOP teas|
|BOP||Broken Orange Pekoe||OP leaves that are broken|
|FBOP||Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe||FOP leaves that are broken|
Also, we can add:
- SFTGFOP Supreme Finest Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe
- Very high-quality FOP with lots of golden tips. The numeral “1” is often added to the end of the description to indicate a top-quality tea (e.g. SFTGFOP1).
Tip – Flowery Orange Pekoe
Second Leaf – Orange Pekoe
Third Leaf – Pekoe
Fourth Leaf – Pekoe Souchong
Fifth Leaf – Souchong
Sixth Leaf – Congou
Seventh Leaf – Bohea
Generally, the remnants of the grading process (after OP, BOP and Fannings have been removed). It is often used in ready-to-drink (RTD) beverages such as bottled iced tea. This leaf particulate contains the most caffeine.
Ok, I think that´s enough information for today, but we are happy to provide this information to you, so you can make a more informed decision when buying our best teas 😊
We´ll be back with more.