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Tea, in the strict sense, is made from the Camellia sinensis plant. There are six main types of tea: green, white, oolong, black, pu'er and yellow.
Each one of these teas is grown, harvested and processed in different ways leading to the unique features that affect the flavour and strength of each tea.
Green tea is unoxidised and most closely resembles the original leaf. Green tea comes in different shapes - ball, fine twist, curled, flat or needle like. Can taste fresh with soft fruity flavours.
White tea is the least processed of all teas and is considered one of the healthiest teas, as it contains antioxidants concentrated in the bud that help strengthen the immune system. Can taste subtle with a sweet aroma of burnt sugar.
Oolong tea is neither black or green tea, it is a semi-oxidised tea that uses mature leaves. Oolong teas are traditionally rolled, twisted or curled into tight balls or thin strands. Can taste fresh with slightly citrus and floral notes.
Black tea is a fully oxidised tea that is generally stronger in flavour than other teas. Can tastes dark and malty.
Pu’er is a post-fermented tea that contains microorganisms with probiotic properties. After the leaves are processed, they are steamed and processed into cakes and aged for many years before they are sold. Can taste woodsy with a gentle bitterness.
Yellow tea is quite rare and its production process is quite similar to green tea, with one additional step called men huan, or “sealing yellow. Can taste quite green with a sweet finish.
Tisanes, also known as ‘herbal teas’, are not really considered tea and they are not made from Camellia sinensis.