Different Types of Tea
All the tea that we drink comes from the Camellia Sinensis plant, or the tea plant. Although one would come
across different varieties of tea in the world the three main varieties are the India tea, the China tea and
the hybrid tea. It is from these that the different types of tea like the green tea, the black tea, the white
tea, the herbal tea and oolong tea are prepared.
Green Tea: When tea leaves are picked, they generally whither and dry and when this occurs, oxidization takes
place. When green tea is manufactured, it is not allowed to oxidize. The leaves are dried very quickly either
in a pan or an oven to dehydrate them and then they are stored. This process retains the polyphenols catechins
and the flavanoids which make drinking green tea a healthy and beneficial option. However green tea possesses
a grassy taste and it loses its flavor within a year.
Modern pyramidal nylon tea bag
To brew a cup of green tea, water which is not more than 80 degrees Celsius should be poured over the tea leaves.
Let the leaves steep in the water for about two to three minutes. Some of the benefits of green tea are its
antioxidant properties which aids in preventing cancer, raising metabolism rate and cutting fat and even reducing
the probability of heart diseases. Due to its short brewing time, green tea is stimulating.
Black Tea: This tea is stronger than any other type of tea. The caffeine content is higher in black tea as compared
to the less oxidized varieties. It retains its flavor for many years. Black tea is the tea that enjoys the maximum
sales in the world.
To brew a cup of black tea we need a teaspoonful of tea leaves for a cup of tea. The tea leaves are steeped in
boiling water for at least three to four minutes before it is strained and served. Plain black tea without sugar
contains antioxidants and is beneficial in reducing cardiovascular diseases.
White Tea: This is the rarest variety of tea. The leaves are picked and harvested before they are fully open and
the buds still have a covering of white hairs on them. White tea undergoes the least processing and is also not
fermented. It has a light and sweet flavor and contains less caffeine and more antioxidants than any other type of
A cup of healthy (but expensive) white tea
The ideal temperature of water for brewing white tea is 76 to 85 degrees Celsius. The leaves should be steeped in water
for at least seven to eight minutes.
Herbal Tea: Tisane or ptisan is an herbal infusion. Tisane is made with any part of the plant either dried or fresh
flowers, roots, seeds or leaves over which boiling water is poured. Flavored teas are prepared by adding this to
regular tea like the jasmine tea of China. There are different types of herbal tea which can be consumed for medicinal
Oolong Tea: Being of Chinese origin, this tea is a cross between the popular black and healthy green varieties and the
two styles commonly associated with this tea are green and amber. The uniqueness of this tea is attributed to the different
manner in which its leaves are prepared and owing to this reason apart from being bereft of the leafy flavor of the green
tea its taste is distinct from other types of tea as well.
The traditional Oolong tea is brewed in a special type of pot known as Gaiwan and the final sip may vary according to the
length of brewing time.