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How to Know What Kind of Tea to Choose

How to Know What Kind of Tea to Choose

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There are many kinds of tea and it’s hard to know which to choose. And the most amazing thing is that that all of the kinds of green and black tea actually come from the same plant called Camellia sinensis, or “tea plant.”

We at 5-Minute Crafts are going to tell you about the different kinds of tea, how to tell them apart, and how to choose the kind you like.

Why the fermentation process matters

Tea that is made from Camellia sinensis is divided into different types based on its fermentation. The fermentation process is when the tea leaves undergo certain changes inflicted by temperature, humidity, and organic light. The leaves oxidize and change their properties.

  • Non-fermented — white and green tea. They are almost non-oxidized.
  • Light fermentation — yellow tea and oolong.
  • Fermented — black tea.
  • Post-fermented — teas that are allowed to ferment and then later fermented again are known as post-fermented teas. Example: Pu-Erh tea.

Black tea

  • It has the richest flavor.
  • It was invented in China, and it’s called “red” there because of the saturated dark color.
  • It’s made from Camellia sinensis that is used to make the famous Assam black tea.
  • Unlike green tea, it retains its unique flavor for a very long time.
  • It contains caffeine.
  • Packs of green tea were a form of local currency in Mongolia, Tibet, and Siberia in the 19th century.
  • They are good for your health in that they contain antioxidants, have a positive influence on your immune system and health, and are good for concentration.
  • The most popular kinds: Assam, Darjeeling, Ceylon, and golden monkey.

Green tea

  • Just like black, green tea is one of the most popular kinds of tea that people drink.
  • Even though green tea is made from the leaves of the same plant, each sort depends on the place, harvest time, and fermentation type.
  • To make the tea correctly, you need to know the exact kind of tea you’re drinking. For example, sencha is made using 70°-90° hot water, and hojicha is made using boiling water.
  • It contains caffeine.
  • Green tea improves brain function thanks to caffeine.
  • Sometimes, the sorts of tea are different in terms of processing: for example, matcha is turned into powder and made differently from other kinds of tea. The drink is different from other types: it’s not transparent and has a deep green color. It’s often made with milk.
  • Popular kinds of green tea: sencha, matcha, hojicha, and gunpowder.

Oolong

  • Oolong is somewhere between black and green in terms of fermentation.
  • Different kinds of oolong tea may be very different in terms of taste. There are sweet, fruit, honey, and even wood-like flavors. The taste depends on how the tea was grown and produced.
  • It contains caffeine.
  • The popular varieties are Tieguanyin and Da Hong Pao.

White tea

  • This kind of tea is not as popular as green or black.
  • It’s called white because the bud of the tea is covered in white fibers.
  • This tea is dried without any additional processing.
  • It contains caffeine.
  • Despite the name, when it’s done, it is light-yellow.
  • It has a tender taste with honey and fruity flavors.
  • The popular varieties are Bai Mudan and Shou Mei.

Yellow tea

  • This is the rarest and the most expensive kind of tea.
  • It’s expensive because its production is more complicated than green tea, for example.
  • Yellow tea has a lighter taste than most other green teas.
  • It contains caffeine.
  • The popular varieties are Jun Shan Yin Zhen, Meng Ding Huangya, and Weishan Maojian.

Fermented tea

  • This is the kind of tea that undergoes microbial fermentation for several months or even years.
  • In China, this tea is called dark tea, not to be confused with black tea.
  • It is commonly pressed into bricks or cakes.
  • The most popular kind is Pu-Erh.

Herbal tea

  • Herbal tea is not exactly tea because it’s not made from the leaves of the same plant. Different kinds of herbal tea may have a positive effect on the body and be different in color, taste, and smell.

The most popular kinds of herbal tea are:

  • chamomile
  • hibiscus
  • lime blossom
  • mint
  • ginger
  • pomegranate
  • raspberry

Mixed kinds of tea

  • Popular kinds of tea like Breakfast, Earl Grey, and Russian Caravan are actually mixes of tea.
  • For example, Earl Grey is made by infusing black teas with citrus or bergamot peel.
  • In order to make flavored tea, flowers are used (jasmine, rose, lotus, orchid, herbs (mint), spices (cinnamon, ginger).
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