All tea comes from the same plant, Camellia sinensis, whether it is black, green, white, or oolong. Different tea types are developed based on how the tea leaves are processed after they are plucked. With so many kinds to try, it can be tricky to choose your ideal tea, especially if you don’t have knowledge of different types of tea. In an effort to expand your tea mind, we want to introduce you to each of these tea types and help you on your journey to discovering a few new favorites.
Black tea is the most common tea in North America. It is derived from tea leaves that are withered, rolled, oxidized and then fired. This tea boasts numerous health benefits and, as with most teas, can be consumed in loose-leaf form or steeped and enjoyed as tea bags. Black tea types include:
Ceylon (Sri Lanka)
*Pu-erh tea, pronounced “POO-air,” refers not to color but instead to a special processing it undergoes that allows the tea to have a very long shelf life. Pu-erh teas, like those sourced by The Republic of Tea, have strong, distinctive flavors, yield many health benefits and actually improve with age.
Green tea is a longtime treasure of China and Japan that is steadily gaining popularity in America. Green tea is derived from tea leaves that are heated or steamed right after plucking and then rolled and fired. Green tea offers about half the caffeine of black tea and offers an assortment of health benefits. Green tea types include:
Spider Leg (Japan)
Longjing (China, Lung Ching, Dragon Well)
*Matcha tea powder is ground from fine Japanese green tea leaves. It is the star of the centuries-old Japanese tea ceremony, and its pleasant taste and health benefits make it a favorite of many tea lovers today. This top-quality tea, like our U-Matcha Tea, is also ideal for including in an assortment of tea recipes.
White tea is produced from buds and leaves that are simply harvested and dried without being rolled or fired. This tea type is sweet with subtle grassy notes. The Republic of Tea’s assortment of white teas in particular are grown only in the Fujian province of China and 100% white, a rare tea we introduced to the West in 2002 – a staple of high-end tea collections, and a new favorite flavor for connoisseurs to buy and drink with many health benefits.
Oolong tea is created from tea leaves that are withered, rolled, semi-oxidized, then fired. Tie Guan Yin (Mainland China; Ti Kuan Yin) and Formosa Oolong (Taiwan) are the most popular oolong teas available today. It assumes a distinct flavor with caffeine content midway between black tea and green tea.
Remember, tea types are just the beginning. Many of our teas are also blended with other premium herbs to produce unique and distinct, premium flavored teas.
Now that you’ve been introduced to these traditional tea varietals, what teas do you most look forward to sipping? Share with us in the comment section below, or on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest!