Tea breaks down into three basic types: black, green and oolong. In the U.S., over 90 percent of the tea consumed is black tea, which has been fully oxidized or fermented and yields a hearty-flavored, amber brew. Some of the popular black teas include English Breakfast (good breakfast choice since its hearty flavor mixes well with milk), Darjeeling (a blend of Himalayan teas with a flowery bouquet suited for lunch) and Orange Pekoe (a blend of Ceylon teas that is the most widely used of the tea blends).
Green tea skips the oxidizing step. It has a more delicate taste and is light green/golden in color. Green tea, a staple in the Orient, is gaining popularity in the U.S. due in part to recent scientific studies linking green tea drinking with reduced cancer risk.
Oolong tea, popular in China, is partly oxidized and is a cross between black and green tea in color and taste.
While flavored teas evolve from these three basic teas, herbal teas contain no true tea leaves. Herbal and "medicinal" teas are created from the flowers, berries, peels, seeds, leaves and roots of many different plants.
Green Tea - Types and origins
Bancha - Origin - Japan - also produced in China and Indonesia.
The Large leaf is steamed. A sweet tasting, light golden liqueur.
China Green - a generic name for Chinese green tea. This tea is usually pan fired resulting in a very slight" Smoky " taste and aroma.
China powder - similar to Japanese Macha
Darjeeling Green teas - Origin - Darjeeling district of India
A totally different experience. The appearance, of this tea resemble a combination of both green and
black Darjeeling teas.
Its aroma and flavor characteristics are those of a Darjeeling tea not the "Grassy" flavor and aroma typical
of Japanese green teas.
Gunpowder - Origin - China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Sri Lanka
Young leaves are tightly rolled in order to preserve freshness.
Kukicha - Origin Japan.
Twigs of the tea leaf. Some are lightly roasted. The tea produces a very light liquor and has the least
amount of caffeine.
Konacha - Origin Japan.
Also known as " Sushi Tea ", semi - powdered (coarse) Only high grade young leaves are used for this tea.
Macha ( Matcha ) - Origin Japan.
This tea is made of young tea leaves that are shielded from the sun for 4 to 6 weeks resulting in a very
delicate taste. It is ground to a very fine powder.
Sencha - meaning " common tea " - Origin Japan.
Wide variety of grades and tastes from mild. and sweet flavor to a strong vegetal flavor and aroma.
Sencha - Origin China - Labeled " Japan tea " with the appearance of Japanese Sencha. Chinese grown tea
does not have the trademark aroma and flavor of Japanese Sencha.