Black tea, known as “red tea” in China, is the category which is fermented before baking. Black tea undergoes withering (drying), left to ferment for a long while, and then roasted. Black tea leaves become completely oxidized after processing.
Black tea is the most widespread type as people all over the world make their tea by dipping tea bags of black tea in their cups and enjoy the rich taste. Being a fully fermented tea, black tea contains about 20% of the caffeine in a cup of coffee. The health benefits include possible reduction of heart disease risk due to its partial prevention of cholesterol absorption. Black teas are good for blood sugar level and blood pressure regulation, for gingivitis and tooth decay prevention.
Learn more about black tea or taste our Black Teas.
This represents a variety half way between the green and the black teas, being made after partial/semi fermentation. Oolong Tea leaves are withered and spread before undergoing a brief fermentation process. Then Oolong Tea is fried, rolled and roasted. Aroma ranges from light to medium.
Beginners in Oolong Tea should be careful as even though flavor is only mild to medium, the tea could be very strong.
Green tea is the variety that keeps the original color of the tealeaves without fermentation during processing. Green Tea is the most natural of all tea classes. It’s picked, natural dried, and then fried briefly (a process called “killing the green”) to get rid of its grassy smell.
Green Tea has the most medical value and the least caffeine content of all Chinese tea classes. Aroma is medium to high, flavor is light to medium. Part of this revival is due to the numerous health benefits that have recently been discovered in green tea ranging from lowering cholesterol, blood sugar levels and managing obesity to being a possible preventative of high blood pressure, certain cancers and neurological disorders.
White tea is made from the buds and young leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant and sun dried or dried by steaming with no fermentation. As a result it has the least amount of caffeine of all the teas, about 1% that of a cup of coffee, and the most subtle flavours.
A study in 2009 showed that white tea has high antiinflammatory, antioxidant, anti-collagenase, and anti-elastase properties which could potentially reduce the risks of developing rheumatoid arthritis, some cancers, heart disease and slow the enzymatic break-down of elastin and collagen, traits which accompany aging.