Assam: The world's largest contiguous tea growing region, situated on either side of the Brahmaputra in Northern India.

Autumnal: The Darjeeling Autumnal begins after the second flush period (October/November) and has a more full-bodied taste than the second flush. The yields are not as high as during the peak times, however.

Bancha:  Bancha is the traditional tea of Japan. It is generated during the production of Sencha and is coarser, low in caffeine (teine) and rich in tannins.

Below Best: Lower to the best. (Grades).

Below Best and poorest: second best and not standard quality.

Below Best Western’s: Second Best in the Western’s Category

Best Western’s:  Best Quality Tea in the Western Category.

Best Liquoring Varieties : Best in Colour, Taste & Quality brewed tea,

Best Uva : Best Quality Tea in the Uva Region of Sri Lanka

Bitters: See tannins

Blend: Blends are mixtures of different teas to produce a distinctive new taste and or to reduce the cost of a tea by mixing teas from cheaper regions.

BM: see About Tea – Types of Tea.

BOP1A: see About Tea - Types of Tea.

Bolder Types: Bigger uniform particle size

BP1:  Types of Tea. ( Off Grades) see About Tea – Types of Tea

Brewing: see About Tea – How to make a perfect cuppa

Brighter:  The quality of a lively fresh tea of good quality.  Also used to describe a lively bright appearance: a bright red brew or light leaf as opposed to a dull brown or black colour.

Brighter Udapussellawa : same characteristics of Tea as above in the Udapussellawa region in Sri Lanka. (Best Tea in the Udapussellawa Region).

Broken: Broken is the term for small-leaved tea. It is smaller than leaf tea but larger than fannings.
Broken leaf grades:

  • P/FP (Pekoe/Flowery Pekoe) – Mainly in Ceylon and Southern India, also produced in some parts of Kenya. Usually coarser, fleshier broken leaf.
  • BOP coarse (Broken Orange Pekoe ) – Indonesian name for Pekoe.
  • BPS (Broken Pekoe Souchong) – Name for Pekoe in Assam and Darjeeling.
  • TGFBOP1 (Tippy Golden Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe 1) – Finest broken First Grade Leaves in Darjeeling and some parts of Assam. High tip content, uniform leaf.
  • GFBOP1 (Golden Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe 1) – Mainly produced in Assam as the top broken grade; the only tippy broken from Kenya.
  • GBOP (Golden Broken Orange Pekoe) – Next, second-grade tea. Inhomogeneous leaf, fewer tips.
  • FBOP (Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe) – Coarser broken, with some tips from Assam, Ceylon, Indonesia, China and Bangladesh. In South America coarser, black broken. In Southern India, Pekoe is often known as FBOP.
  • BOP (Broken Orange Pekoe) – Main broken grade in Ceylon, Southern India, Java and China.
  • BOPF (Broken Orange Pekoe Fannings)
  • BP (Broken Pekoe) – From Indonesia Ceylon, Southern India.
  • OP (Orange Pekoe)
  • FBOPF (Finest Broken Orange Pekoe Flowery) – Mainly from Ceylon's "low districts". A leafy BOP1 with Tips. Specialty: so-called "Spider Leaf".
  • BT (Broken Tea) – From Sumatra, Ceylon, some parts of Southern India. Usually a black, open, fleshy leaf, very bulky.


Bulk: Bulks are blends of individual crops from the same plantation. Bulks are used when there is a high demand for tea from a particular plantation.

Bulk Tea Category:  see above. These Teas are mainly for exports.
Caffeine: Natural protective toxin of the tea plant. Tea contains 4 to 10 % caffeine (teine), which gives it its stimulating effect. A cup of tea contains 20 to 70mg of caffeine (teine), a cup of coffee 80-120 mg caffeine.

Camellia sinensis: The original tea plant (also known as Thea sinensis and Chinese tea). Grows in the form of a bush in moderate climate zones and is even capable of surviving frost.

Catechin: Catechin is the main part of acidic acids in tea. They give the typical bitter taste to some teas. Catechin is said to have a prophylactic effect against arteriosclerosis, heart attack and caries. Clinical studies are currently running world-wide.

Chun Mee: Green tea from China with long, rolled leaf.

Coarse cuts: Term used to refer to fruit and herb teas whose individual constituents measure 2-7 mm.

Clean Leaf:  Leaf of fair standard

CTC: Crushing, Tearing, Curling (see About Tea - Production )

Decaffeinated tea: The decaffeination of black tea can be performed in 3 different ways: with methylene chloride, ethyl acetate or carbon dioxide. These substances are used to extract the caffeine (from the tea, and are in turn also extracted with the aid of steam to render the tea drinkable again. The carbon dioxide method is the natural way to "decaf" a tea.

Direct Sales: Tea sold directly from the estate to the Buyer.
Dooars:  Tea growing region in Northern India, situated west of Assam, strong flavour reminiscent of Assam tea.
Dragon Pearl: Very rare and special tea with a hand-rolled, green leaf and Silver Tips (known also as Silver Needles).

Drying: See Production, orthodox

Dust: The smallest leaf grade consisting of fine particles, very economical, mainly used in tea bags. Usually high in tannin but low in character.

Earl Grey: Bergamot oil was used to flavour what was probably the first flavoured tea in the world. The English Earl Charles Grey hit on an idea for making this tea more interesting. He got the recipe from China, with which he had diplomatic contacts. "Earl Grey" is still probably the best known variety of Flavoured Black Tea.

English Breakfast: A blend characterised by English tastes. Always based on Assam and Ceylon.

Essential oils: These determine the flavour and aroma of the tea. Approximately 200 aromatic compounds are known to exist, 23 of which have been identified so far.  

Ex-Estate : Teas that are sold ex-colombo. (teas are at the estate to retain the quality)

Fannings:  Fannings are a small leaf grade, of granular consistency, very economical, mainly used in tea bags. They are high in tannin but lower in quality and character than larger grades.

  • BOPF (Broken Orange Pekoe Fannings) – Main grade in Ceylon, Indonesia, Southern India, Kenya, Mozambique, Bangladesh and China. It is a Black-leaf tea, few added ingredients, uniform particle size, no tips. In Indonesia BOP fine, small-leaf BOP.
  • TGFOF (Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Fannings)
  • GFOF (Golden Flowery Orange Fannings) – Finest grade in Darjeeling for teabag production.
  • FOF (Flowery Orange Fannings) – Common in Assam, Dooars and Bangladesh. Some leaf sizes come close to the smaller broken grades.
  • OF (Orange Fannings) – From Northern India and some parts of Africa and South America.
  • PF (Pekoe FanninWgs).

Fermentation: See Production, orthodox

FF / FF1:   see About Tea - Types of Tea

FGS1 / FGS : see About Tea - Types of Tea

Fine cuts:  Fine cuts is the equivalent term for fannings in the case of fruit and herb teas. The maximum particle size for fine cuts is approximately 2 mm. See also Fannings.

First Flush: The first shoots of the year in Darjeeling tea plants, between March and April, the first time when the leaves are 'flushed' out on screens to be processed. Mild, fresh and flowery taste with a pale liquor.

Flavourings: Nature-identical flavourings are obtained by chemical processes and are identical in their chemical composition to a substance occurring naturally in a raw or processed foodstuff of vegetable or animal origin. They are used to flavour foods in which stability of taste, heat and acid resistance, a long shelf life and consistent quality are essential criteria.
See also Natural flavourings.

Flaky Types: Flat and Open tea  leaf.

Fluoride: The high fluoride content in green tea is said to have an effect which slows down the build up of caries and therefore protects the mouth.

Forward Contracts: Buyer directly request tea through a  broker  & contracted qty’s are delivered in stages over a period of time.

Fruit Tea: The basic ingredients of fruit tea are apple, hibiscus and rose hip. This can be varied to obtain any flavour and appearance, however.

Genmaicha:  Japanese Bancha with roasted brown rice and popcorn. Pale brown liquor with a pleasant aroma. Slightly salty, grainy taste with a hint of sweetness.

Green Monkey: The Tai-Mu Mountains to the north of the Chinese province of Fujian are home to this unusual tea which is made carefully by hand to give it its distinctive fresh, smooth character and white tips.

Green Mu Dan: Green tea rose. 50 young shoots are tied together by hand into a tea rose. Develops its full form and a fine, pleasant aroma when hot water is poured over it.

Green Pekoe: From the Chinese province of Fujian. Thin, carefully rolled, tippy leaf. Fresh, pleasant taste and clear with pale-green liquor.

Green Rooibos: Aspalathus linoaris. Same plant as the Red Rooibos but unfermented, with a light, delicately tangy and herb-flowery character.

Green tea: The health benefits of green tea have been known to the Japanese for centuries. The beverage is already recommended in ancient Japanese textbooks, e.g. to improve concentration. Today we not only know that green tea is good for you but its healing powers are also the subject of scientific research.

Growth: Depending on region and temperature, tea may grow all year round or only at certain times.

Gu Zhang Mao Jian: Chinese tea from the Wuyi mountains along the Quishui River. Possesses a slightly sweet, chestnutty character. Harvested for 10 days in spring and slightly fermented. Ideal for newcomers to green tea. Gunpowder Green tea variety with a hard, tightly rolled leaf. The leaves are rolled into homogeneous balls between the palm of the hand and the inside of the boiler.

Gyokuro: A Japanese speciality. An exclusive tea known as "fine dewdrop" which is shaded with rice matting or foil weeks before the harvest, to reduce the tannin and increase the caffeine content. 

Herbs: Herb teas have been prized and recommended for their beneficial effects on the nerves and internal organs since the ancient civilisations. However, these products straight from "God's apothecary" are often less than divine in terms of taste. Once again, it is a case of finding the right mix. The herbal composition must have a balancing effect in order to be safely drunk over long periods.

Hibiscus: This plant originates from Sudan. Its flower has a pleasantly acidic taste.
See our variety from Thailand Selection #2424.

Highgrown: Very pale teas with a delicate aroma grown in the mountain regions of Ceylon.
See our Selection #1066

Hybrid: A cross between two plants.

Iced tea: Tea also makes a refreshing drink for the summer months. Cold: Make a pot of fruit tea (e.g. Caipirinha, Apple/Lemon, Sangria or Cranberry) with a higher strength than usual, leave it to stand then add ice cubes. After a short time, you will be able to enjoy a refreshing cup of ice-cold tea.

Ingredients: Active ingredients in Tea: The cheapest drink worldwide after water is one of the most valuable in terms of its chemical composition: approx. 32 % of its ingredients pass into the infusion.

Tea contains: Caffeine (teine); tannins; amino acids; proteins; trace elements and minerals –  fluoride, potassium, calcium, manganese; vitamins, vitamins B1, B2 and niacin.

Irregular :   regular variance.

Jasmine tea: Probably the best known flavoured Chinese tea. Perfumed exclusively with tender white jasmine flowers. These lose their scent within 20 hours of picking, and therefore have to be added to the tea immediately to give it the desired aroma.

Ju Hua Cha: White tea rose. 50 young shoots are tied together by hand into a tea rose. Develops its full form and a fine, pleasant aroma when hot water is poured over it.

Keemun: Classic Chinese black leaf tea with a small, delicate leaf and a sweet aroma. Lower in teine than most other black (considered red in China) teas. Used as component in various "Russian Teas" because of its low tannin level.

Kokicha: A Japanese specialty. The green tea is first pulverised before being recompressed by a special process and cut into small, longitudinal slices. Pleasantly fresh with a pale, mild liquor. Another version in this category is the "small veins tea". Broken leaves are blended with fine-cut veins of the tea bush.

Kwai Flower: This Chinese tea gets the name Kwai Flower from the osmanthus blossom. Also from China, this is a sweet-smelling plant with a strong, aromatic taste. In China it is also used in the manufacture of various foodstuffs such as sugar and wine.

Lapacho: Lapacho is obtained from the bark of the rainforest tree Lapacho, whereby only the outer red bark is used in the production process. The bark contains numerous tannins, acids and vitamins. The tree does not have to be felled for this purpose, as the bark grows back again within a year.

Lapsang Souchong: Classic Chinese black tea, flavoured with the smoke from pine tree roots.

Leaf: Leaf tea is the largest leaf grade. The virtually intact leaf is much prized for its fine aroma, particularly in the case of Darjeelings. Leaf teas currently account for approx. 2% of total tea production.
See also leaf grades.

Leaf grades: Whole Leaf Grades:  For more information, see our discussion on Tea Grades and Tea Production Techniques

  • BOP1 (Broken Orange Pekoe First Grade Leaves) – Semi Leaf Tea. Specialty of "low districts" of Ceylon. Coarse, black-leaf tea, comprising roughly 40 % OP and 60 % Pekoe/BOP.
  • Off grades – Some OP2 (Orange Pekoe Second Grade Leaves). Leaf tea with added ingredients, but only in Ceylon and Southern India

Lot: The produce of the individual plantations is traded in lots. One lot consists of several crates, boxes or sacks.

Lowgrown: Tea from the low-lying parts of Ceylon's tea growing regions. Lowgrowns generally have a stronger taste and darker coloured liquor.

LTP: See Production LTP

Lung Ching: Green tea from China with a flat, long leaf. The leaves are first stretched with the fingers and then pressed flat.

Lychee tea: Chinese tea flavoured with the Chinese lychee fruit for a hint of exotic sweetness.

Matcha: Japanese green powdered tea, mainly used for the Japanese tea ceremony.

Matcha bowl:  Handleless porcelain or ceramic bowl used in the Japanese tea ceremony. Plays an important spiritual role within the ritual.

Matcha whisk: The Matcha whisk (chasen) is used in the Japanese tea ceremony to prepare the powdered tea in the bowl. One of the main implements of the ritual. 

Mate: The mate bush (Ilex paraguariensis) is indigenous to Brazil and Argentina and is botanically related to our holly plant. Mate is the only herb tea which, like green and black tea, contains the stimulants caffeine and theobromine. After harvesting and sorting, the mate leaves and buds are quickly heated over fire to prevent them from turning black. This is followed by drying and crushing of the leaves. The end product is green mate. Another milder version is also obtained by additional roasting, giving the consumer a choice between green ate and roasted mate.

Medium Grown : Tea Grown in a elevation of 2000ft – 4000ft above Sea Level in Sri Lanka.

Muscatel: A tea from the Darjeeling region, picked during the late second flush period.

Namring: Plantation in Darjeeling producing extremely fine, flowery teas. Altitude – 1,380 m, Size –  475 hectares.

Natural flavourings: Natural flavourings are obtained by physical, enzymatic or microbiological processes from raw materials of vegetable origin which are used as such or processed for human consumption using conventional foodstuff preparation techniques.

Nature-identical flavourings: Nature-identical flavourings are obtained by chemical processes and are identical in their chemical composition to a substance occurring naturally in a raw or processed foodstuff of vegetable or animal origin. They are used to flavour foods in which stability of taste, heat and acid resistance, a long shelf life and consistent quality are essential criteria.
See also Natural flavourings.

Neat Leaf : Even leaf

Nuwara Eliya: Tea growing region in the uplands of Ceylon. Produces very pale tea varieties.

Off Grades :  see Leaf Grades.

Oolong: Oolong is a semi-fermented tea (18-30%). Its secret lies in the fermentation of the leaf's outer edges, while the heart of the leaf remains unfermented. It is mainly grown in Taiwan and China.

Orange Pekoe Organic cultivation: Various plantations and provinces have now switched to organic cultivation methods. These refrain from using any pesticides or plant protection agents, encouraging natural resistance instead by planting lemon trees between the tea plants.

Orthodox: Tea was Processed this way for centuries by hand with great care. Some of today’s great Tea’s are still Produced  in this manner

Other Udapussellawa : Below Best and the poorer in the Udapussellawa region in Sri Lanka.

Other Uva : Below Best and the poorer in the  Uva Region of Sri Lanka

Packaging: Until a few years ago, tea was traditionally only shipped in wooden boxes. These gave the leaf sufficient protection, were easy to stack and preserved the aroma well due to their aluminium lining. Nowadays, cardboard boxes and sacks are often used for environmental reasons. Smaller leaf grades in particular (fannings, dust) are usually transported in sacks.

Pai Mu Tan: Meaning "White Peony", this white tea has a delicate, flowery aroma. It is derived from the tip (Silver Needle) and the two most upper leaves of the plant, being jade green in color, and is slightly steamed.
See also White tea.

Patina: Tannin residue deposited inside the tea pot.

Pekoe: See leaf grades

Pesticides: Pesticides (herbicides, insectides and fungicides) are used to ensure better plant protection and increase the productivity of the harvest. Pesticides are harmful to humans above a certain concentration. In the United States and Germany, the observance of the legal maximum values is therefore strictly monitored.

PF1 :   Types of Tea .(Off Grades) see About Tea – Types of Tea

Pi Lo Chun: Green spring snail. Green tea with a wiry leaf which has a distinctive fresh scent and a fruity taste.

Popoff: Popoff-Freres was supplier to the court of the Russian Czars as well as numerous European and Middle Eastern monarchs. These excellent, typically Russian blends were awarded the Grand Prix at the world exhibition in Paris in 1900. They were in vogue in both East and West, in court circles and in the elegant tea salons of the French bourgeoise. 

Poorer:  Quality not up to standard.

Preparation:   see About Tea – PREPARATION

Production:    see About Tea -  PRODUCTION

Plainer:  A liquor that is clean but dull, lacking in desirable characteristics.

Plainer Western’s:  same characteristics of Tea as above in the western category.

Private Sales:  Tea sold through a broker directly to the Indented Buyer.

Public Auction: A Place where Tea Brokers who are representing Sellers (Planters) advertise their catalogues and Auctions teas listed in their catalogues to Buyer Representatives by way of biding.

Pu Erh: Pu Erh (Pou Nei) is a strong-flavored tea with a fleshy leaf from the Chinese province of Yunnan. It gets its name from the town of Pu Erh, via which it is sold. It has a very earthy, pervasive aroma. Pu Erh is produced according to highly traditional methods similar to those used approximately 2000 years ago in China.

Rock candy: Rock candy crystals are often added to strong-tasting teas such as Assam, as well as English, Scottish and Ceylon blends. The addition of honey, milk or cream is also common. 

Rooibos: Rooibos is grown in the mild oceanic climate of the north-west coast of South Africa and harvested from January to March. Its needle-type leaves and yellow flowers are reminiscent of a gorse bush. For tea production, the young twigs are harvested, crushed and left to dry for several days in the sun. During this time, the natural fermentation process takes place, giving the tea its golden-red colour and typical aroma. Rooibos has a full-bodied taste and a mild aroma.

The Red and Green Rooibos Bush Tea is the 'Soft Drink' from South Africa that is becoming increasingly popular with people who enjoy its mild, gentle fragrance and appreciate it as a healthy beverage because of its beneficial effects. This unfermented Green Rooibos is teine (caffeine) free, low in tannin and carries a high content of antioxidants. Rooitea has a pleasant sweet taste and is delicious either hot or cold, can be enjoyed with rock candy crystals or milk and may be mixed with fruit juice and ice cubes to prepare an exotic cocktail. To prepare: Use the same method as for Black Tea.

Rolling : The object of rolling is to macerate the leaf so that the enzymes and their substrates get intimately mixed up. This is achieved mechanically either by the use of an orthodox roller, the rotorvane, or by CTC (crushing,tearing and curling) machines. Rolling ruptures the cell wall thereby enabling the production of enzymes.

Rosehip: The rosehip (Rosa canina) or dog rose is an important constituent of fruit teas due to the substances it contains (including a high Vitamin C content).

Russian blend: See Popoff

Second Flush: The second main harvest period of the year, the time when the leaves are 'flushed' out on screens to be processed. The second flush is harvested between June and August, and has a fuller, nut/grape-like and stronger taste than the first flush,

Secondary: see Below Best.

Semi Leaf: See leaf grade Ceylon BOP1

Sencha: Sencha is probably the most popular tea variety in Japan and has a long, flat leaf. Japanese Sencha has a fresh, slightly sweet taste, while Chinese Sencha is reminiscent of fresh hay and highly aromatic.

Silver Sprout: Silver sprout is a crescent-leafed tea with a yellow-green liquor and an extremely fresh, mild aroma.
Compare with our Selection #2007 Organic China Green Tea "Chun Mee" Precious eyebrow.

Singbulli: Plantation in Darjeeling, situated at an altitude of 1,100 m, size – 750 hectares.

Smoked tea: A Chinese tea smoked over pine needles. A familiar variety of smoked tea is Lapsang Souchong

Snow Buds: Green tea with white tips and a pleasant 'White Tea character', honey-colored liquor. Mild, smooth taste. See also White Tea

Sorting :   Sorting  may be defined as a procedure in which particles of bulk tea are separated into grades of different sizes. This sizing can be done either manually or by using different sizing equipments. Sorting meshes of various sizes are used to grade the tea.

Souchong: Chinese word for a large leaf.

Southern India: See Nilgiri

Spider Leaf: A specialty from the highlands of the Ratnapura district. Characterised by a distinctively fine, needle-type leaf with tender, silver tips, the taste is spicy and has an unique and outstanding touch. It is produced in small quantities only.

Stalks: This term refers to the small stalks and twigs which are picked with the tea and not sifted out during production. The Japanese Kukicha (Kokeicha) variety consists entirely of stalks which are roasted before use.

Storage: As tea is a highly sensitive natural product, it must always be stored in dry conditions. Moisture is its worst enemy, so it must be kept in sealed containers. Tea should be stored in a cool, dark place away from heat, light and the sun's rays. It is also advisable to store tea packaged in small units. It should not be kept in the fridge, the freezer or above your stove top area.

Sugar: Sugar is an ingredient, which is often used, particularly in Europe. When administered carefully it will successfully round off the sense of taste. With most sensitive teas we recommend however to sweeten your hot beverages with rock candy crystals.

Supplementary:  Teas which are sent for catalogued which are less than 10 packages but are above 75 Kg’s in total unless otherwise a final  Invoice.

Tannin: Tannin is one of the main constituents of tea, making up 8 to 20% of its contents. They have a calming effect on the stomach and give the tea its typical strong, slightly bitter taste.

Tannins: Tannic acids or tannins are bitter substances which act on the stomach and intestine. They also have an antibacterial effect which helps to restore a healthy bowel flora. A cancer inhibiting effect described in scientific literature is attributed to individual tannin constituents along with a reduction in blood pressure.

Tea bag:  see About Tea - The tea bag

Tea brick: (Zhuan Cha, Dschuan-Tscha) In order to facilitate transportation of the tea and preserve its aroma for longer, the Chinese under the Tang dynasty (618-906 AD) developed the tea brick. After picking, the young leaves were steamed, crushed and mixed to a paste using plum juice as a binding agent. This paste was poured into a crucible and heated until dry. During this period, the tea brick was even used as a unit of currency. Modern tea bricks consist of tea dust compressed hydraulically into units weighing 1 and 2 pounds. They're intended for decoration rather than drinking.

Tea ceremony: The Japanese have preserved this ritual since its development by Japanese Buddhist monks centuries ago. A tea ceremony is held among invited guests in a Japanese tea house (chashitsu). Those who enter the house leave their daily routine behind them for a while and withdraw into themselves to give thanks for nature and existence. After a small welcoming meal (a type of cake), the Matcha is prepared, whereby the host places the powdered tea in the earthenware bowl (chawan) with a special spoon, adds hot water and stirs or beats it with the tea whisk (chasen). The bowl is then handed round the circle of guests. The audible slurping of the tea is an expression of appreciation. The process may be repeated several times, and the ceremony can last up to several hours. This is only a brief outline of the ceremony. To find out more about the spiritual side and the whole procedure and content, why not try it yourself – tea ceremony seminars are offered in many museums, for example.

Tea cone: Chinese specialty tea. The young tea leaves are bundled together in small "balls" and tied with string, then skilfully twisted by hand into a cone shape.

Tea growing regions: The main tea growing regions of the world are India, Ceylon, China, Japan, Taiwan, Vietnam, Indonesia (Java, Sumatra) Kenya, Malawi, Bangladesh, Russia, Iran, Turkey, Uganda, Tanzania, Argentina. 

Tea plant: see About Tea – What’s Tea

Tea pot: The tea pot should only be used for tea, never for coffee. Similarly, it should never be cleaned inside with washing-up liquid, as the soap affects the taste. In fact, the typical patina inside the pot actually improves the aroma of the tea.

Tea roses: White tea-rose, about 50 young shoots are tied together carefully by hand into a tea-rose. When hot water is poured over, it takes on its outward appearance and its fine and pleasant aroma.

Tea tasters: The tea taster tests teas for their appearance, aroma and taste in both the source and importing countries. A tea taster may sample up to 500 teas per day at peak times.

Teine: See Caffeine

Temi: Plantation in Sikkim.

Temple of Heaven: Standard form of a Chinese Gunpowder variety. Tightly rolled, dark leaf.

Thea assamica: Thea assamica (Assam tea) is one of two original tea plants. Unless cut back, it grows into a substantial tree 15 to 20m high. It needs a warm climate and is an exclusively tropical plant. It was first discovered in 1823 in what is now the Assam region.

Thea sinensis: Thea sinensis (Chinese tea) is one of two original tea plants. It retains a shrub-like stature even without pruning, reaching a maximum height of 3 to 4m. It is most suited to moderate climates and can even survive frosts. Source: "Thirsty for knowledge - a guide to tea" by the German tea marketing board.

Teine: See Caffeine 

Tips: This refers to the light brown tips of the tea. Picked while young and tender, these tips do not have such high tannin content as the older ones and do not turn the same copper colour during fermentation. They are not indicative of quality except in the case of Assam teas. 

Tippy: Teas with white or golden tips, indicating high quality.

TransFair: The tea we sell has been awarded the TransFair fair trade seal by TransFair eV. Fair trade encourages self-sufficiency and equality on the part of disadvantaged trading partners in the third world. The higher price paid for the tea is used directly to improve the living conditions of the tea pickers and processors. The Organic MAKAIBARI variety is sold exclusively via specialty tea merchants.

Travancore: Southern Indian tea growing region.

Udapussellawa : A Tea Growing Region.

Uva: The tea growing region Uva is located in the eastern part of Sri Lanka in the environs of the district capital Badulla. Lots of tea bushes grow here in the shade of the trees, resulting in a lush, full-bodied tea with a sweetish, tangy taste.

Vitamins: Just like other green plants the tea leaf contains vitamins and pro-vitamins. As well as fat-soluble vitamins there is also a wide range of water soluble vitamins. However oxidation sensitive links are extensively disturbed by the fermentation process. So, for example, the ascorbic acid contained in the tea leaf is completely broken down in the manufacture of black tea. Oxidation sensitive vitamins are to be found in greater amounts in green tea than in black tea.

Water: The choice of the right water is as important for a good cup of tea as the proportions and brewing time. The water should not have too much taste of its own, and should not be hard or high in limestone, chlorine or iron.

Water with an excessively high salt content or oxidised magnesium is also unsuitable. A fine Darjeeling will never taste as good in a region with limy water as in one with a mild, soft water which allows its delicate aroma to fully unfold. The best water comes from springs in high mountain valleys.

If you don't happen to have this to hand, you can resort to a lime filter or boil the water 2 or3 times. Never use distilled water and let boiling water at 212°F cool to 180°F, particularly in the case of green tea, otherwise heat-sensitive enzymes may be destroyed. It is essential to boil the water first however, in order to incorporate the necessary oxygen into the water. Black tea should be made with boiling water, as the heat-sensitive enzymes have already been destroyed in this case by fermentation.

Water temperature: The degree of hotness or coldness of the water (corresponding to its molecular activity). Recommended temperatures to brew various categories of tea: Prepare Black Tea, Herbal Infusions, Fruit Teas with boiling water at 212°F Prepare Oolong Teas at 190°F Prepare Green and White Tea, some First Flush Darjeelings 180°F

Wellness: Tea not only quenches thirst, but also acts as a tonic. It stimulates the mind and creates a feeling of wellbeing. Two ingredients of tea are responsible for its unmistakable yet diverse effect: the stimulant caffeine (teine) and the calm-inducing tannins.

Well Made Types: Well manufactured Tea.

Western’s: Planting District (elevation wise).

White tea: White teas originate mainly from the mountainous regions of Fujian in Southern China. The leaves are gently steamed in the open air and very carefully handled. This tea is gaining more and more converts. Only the bud (Silver Needle) and two upper most leaves are plucked. Very low in tannin and teine. See also Pai Mu Tan.

Withering : It is a procedure which brings about physical and chemical changes in the shoots to produce quality, apart from conditioning the flush for rolling by reducing turgor, weight and volume. Previously the flush used to be withered under the sun. Now this process is generally achieved either by thinly spreading the flush on mats, or in thick layers in troughs for 8-18 hours depending on the condition of the leaves.

Young Hyson: Chinese tea from the province of Zhejiang. The thick, yellowy-green leaves are rolled into a long, thin shape during processing. Produces intense green liquor.

Yunnan: Yunnan is said to be the birthplace of tea. This province in south-eastern China still grows a strong flavoured tea with a fleshy leaf and golden tips. Can  have a slight similarity with Assam.

10 Breaks violations:  Breaking cataloguing rules. Refer Policies & Regulations.

About F&W

Forbes & Walker was set up in 1881 as a partnership between James Forbes and Chapmen Walker. Although there is no actual record of the date on which it was established the very first cash book, still in the possession of the Finance Director, indicates the brokerages were earned from 1st August 1881. In Sir Thomas Villiers' book “Mercantile Lore” the date of establishment of Forbes & Walker has been put down      Read More...

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