The best kind of gossip, typically shared between friends, is over a hot cup of tea. But have you ever wondered, what is a specific kind of tea called? What is the difference between a green or a black tea?
Worry not, here I am, with a descriptive list of 10 types tea we see around!
Black tea, called Hóngchá or red tea in China, is a type of tea that is more oxidized than oolong, green, and white teas. Black tea is generally stronger in flavour than the less oxidized teas. All four types are made from leaves of the shrub Camellia sinensis.
Green tea is a type of tea that 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. Green tea originated in China, but its production and manufacture has spread to many other countries in Asia.
Oolong is a traditional semi-oxidized Chinese tea produced through a process including withering the plant under strong sun and oxidation before curling and twisting. Most oolong teas, especially those of fine quality, involve unique tea plant cultivars that are exclusively used for particular varieties.
White tea is the most delicate of all teas. They are appreciated for their subtlety, complexity, and natural sweetness. They are hand-processed using the youngest shoots of the tea plant, with no oxidation. When brewed correctly, with a very low temperature and a short steeping time, white teas can produce low amounts of caffeine. Of course, steeping with hotter temperature and longer time will extract more caffeine. But by definition, white tea does not have less caffeine than other teas.
Yellow is a rare category of tea that is similar to green tea in appearance and flavor. Yellow tea, however, typically does not have the grassiness of some green teas. Yellow teas typically go through more oxidation than green teas and a longer, slower drying period. All yellow teas come from China.
Puer tea is an aged black tea from China prized for its medicinal properties and earthy flavor. It is perhaps the most mysterious of all tea. Until 1995 it was illegal to import it into the U.S., and the process of its production is a closely guarded state secret in China. It is very strong with an incredibly deep and rich flavor, and no bitterness, and an element that could best be described as almost peaty in flavor.
Dark tea is from Hunan and Sichuan provinces of China and is a flavorful aged probiotic tea that steeps up very smooth with a natural slightly sweet note.
Herbal teas or commonly called Tisanes, are beverages made from the infusion or decoction of herbs, spices, or other plant material in hot water. They do not usually contain caffeine.
Fermented tea is a class of tea that has undergone microbial fermentation, from several months to many years. The exposure of the tea leaves to humidity and oxygen during the process also causes endo-oxidation and exo-oxidation. The tea leaves and the liquor made from them become darker with oxidation.
Flowering tea or Blooming tea consists of a bundle of dried tea leaves wrapped around one or more dried flowers. These are made by binding tea leaves and flowers together into a bulb, then setting them to dry. When steeped, the bundle expands and unfurls in a process that emulates a blooming flower, and the flowers inside emerge as the centerpiece. Typically they are sourced from the Yunnan province of China. Flowers commonly used in flowering teas include globe amaranth, chrysanthemum, jasmine, lily, hibiscus, and osmanthus.
So, get these exotic teas for yourself and let me know in the comments section below, about the experience!