Tea is one of the most popular drinks in the world. While the Brits are known for their tea, you don’t necessarily have to be British or in England to enjoy a nice cup of tea. Similar to any other drink, tea is also an acquired taste, and each individual will prefer a specific flavor of tea that entices their taste buds. All teas come from the same plant species, and the different flavors of tea that are available today are simply an extension to match the varied tastes of tea enthusiasts.
Tea is grown in many countries around the world, including the United States in states such as South Carolina and Hawaii. However, the major tea growing countries that constantly produce and export the highest volume of and best quality tea are India, China, Taiwan, Sri Lanka, and Japan. In countries like India and Sri Lanka, it was actually the British who developed tea plantations.
Popular Types of Tea
Before moving on to the popular tea flavors that you should try, let us first discuss about the most popular tea types. Green, white, black, oolong, and pu-erh tea are the five common categories of tea.
- Green Tea: As green tea is unoxidized, it maintains it vibrant green color. This tea is yielded by two ways: pan-firing and roasting, mainly in China. In Japan, the color of the tea is obtained by steaming the tea leaves in high temperature. Each of these three processes offers a unique flavor to the tea. Steamed green tea is more delicate because they usually contain high level of moisture.
- White Tea: This is the type of tea that is subjected to very little processing. As a result, white tea carries a subtle flavor, and happens to be very delicate on the tongue. White tea leaves are withered and dried after picking, and the resulting tea is usually light grey in color.
- Black Tea: This is one of the most popular varieties of tea among daily tea drinkers. Black tea leaves are completely oxidized and hence give a bold and strong taste, perfect for everyday mornings. For certain scented teas, black tea is used as the base.
- Oolong Tea: Oolong tea is a semi-oxidized tea. This tea is widely produced in Taiwan and China, and the processes involved in making this tea is one of the most complex as it includes a lot of different steps. Good quality oolong teas can be steeped several times.
- Pu-Erh Tea: Pu-erh tea is a fermented type of tea. These teas are usually aged for several months after the oxidization process, which accounts for the fermentation. These teas come in the form of a pressed cake with their year on the package. Depending on the length of their aging, these teas happen to be quite expensive.
New Tea Flavors to Try
With numerous varieties in flavor and a whole lot of health benefits, it is about time you dived into the world of tea. Start by trying these amazing favors:
Peach tea is one of the favorites of all tea drinkers and hence always lands in the list of the top tea flavors. The tea tastes perfect both hot and cold and you will best enjoy it during summer or spring mornings or with brunch. As peach is naturally sweet, it adds a subtle and refreshing taste to otherwise bitter teas. This natural sweetness also eliminates the need to add sugar to the tea.
If you are looking for a drink that can help you relax, calm down, and completely forget about all the stress you have, then lavender tea is the ideal choice for you. Lavender is naturally aromatic and tastes light and refreshing. Pair it with some shortbread cookies or scones to enjoy the best taste. Have a cup of lavender tea in the evening to have a good night’s sleep.
We all know how good roses smell and taste. Rose tea is infused with the same smell and flavor. Generally, rose petals are infused in normal black tea to make this aromatic, romantic drink. Despite carrying a bit of tartness, this tea is nevertheless refreshing. Rose tea goes well with sweet accompaniments.
Known to have anti-aging properties, this floral flavored tea is one of the most popular teas for its great taste and of course, its unique property. The tea is known to protect the cells in our body from the damage caused by free radicals, and hence is preferred by many.
Who doesn’t love chocolate?! For those of you who love chocolate, but worried about the calories, chocolate tea would be the best alternative. Its creamy texture and sweetness makes it a perfect after dinner tea.
Lemon tea is a common tea flavor and many drinkers prefer its refreshing, light yet aromatic taste and flavor. Iced lemon tea is a popular cold version of this tea and will be perfect for a hot summer day. Hot lemon tea will be extremely soothing when you have cold.
Earl Grey Tea
As many of you must be aware, earl grey tea is the most popular black tea all around the world. This tea carries a citrus flavor, since it is produced from a citrus fruit called bergamot. It bold taste makes it a perfect morning tea. The tea is full of antioxidants and therefore is known to help lower cholesterol, reduce aging process, and prevent diabetes.
In addition to these tea flavors, there are a lot more available in the market today, like hibiscus, chamomile, honey, ginger, and raspberry to name a few, that you can give a try. Whether you need something bold to start your day with or something soothing and mild before going to bed, there will definitely be a best tasting tea that suits your palate.