Chinese Teas | Tea History


image of book Tea & Crumpets

Order Tea & Crumpets today

Miss Meredith Sweetpea has taken quite a liking to her new find–Chinese Oolong Tea.  Therefore, she thought it might be interesting to learn a little more about Chinese teas in general, and share it with all of you.

Chinese Teas

Here is an excerpt from Tea & Crumpets: Recipes & Rituals from European Tearooms & Cafes, by Margaret M. Johnson, a book that delightfully offers a history of tea, along with mouth-watering recipes.

“China remains famous for its distinctive black, green, and oolong teas. Lapsang Souchong has a distinctive smoky taste acquired through drying over pinewood fires. Keemun, the traditional tea of old Imperial China, is known for its orchid aroma and brilliant red liquor. It is frequently used as the base for scented blends, the most popular of which is Earl Grey, scented with oil of bergamot.

Tea leaves are processed into three main types: black, green, and oolong. Black tea is most popular worldwide, accounting for 77 percent of the world’s production. If the leaves undergo the full fermentation process, they become black tea. If the leaves are dried quickly without fermentation, they become green teas, which are highly favored by the Chinese and Japanese and increasingly popular in the West because of their health benefits. Green teas represent 21 percent of the world’s production. Oolong tea is semifermented, falling between black and green. The most famous, Formosa oolong, originates in Taiwan (formerly Formosa Island) and has a unique peachy flavor. Oolong teas account for 2 percent of the world’s production.”

What is your favorite tea?

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