Black Tea


Black tea is a variety of tea that is more oxidized than the oolong, green, and white varieties. All four varieties are made from leaves of Camellia sinensis. Black tea is generally stronger in flavor and contains more caffeine than the less oxidized teas. Two principal varieties of the species are used, the small-leaved Chinese variety plant (C. sinensis subsp. sinensis), also used for green and white teas, and the large-leaved Assamese plant (C. sinensis subsp. assamica), which was traditionally only used for black tea, although in recent years some green has been produced.

In Chinese and Chinese influenced languages, black tea is known as "crimson tea" (紅茶, Mandarin Chinese hóngchá; Japanese kōcha; 홍차, Korean hongcha), an accurate description of the colour of the liquid. The term black tea refers to the colour of the oxidized leaves. In Chinese, "black tea" is a commonly used classification for post-fermented teas, such as Pu-erh tea; in the Western world, "red tea" more commonly refers to rooibos, a South African tisane.

While green tea usually loses its flavor within a year, black tea retains its flavour for several years. For this reason, it has long been an article of trade, and compressed bricks of black tea even served as a form of de facto currency in Mongolia, Tibet, and Siberia into the 19th century. The tea originally imported to Europe was either green or semi-oxidized. Only in the 19th century did black tea surpass green in popularity.[citation needed] Although green tea has recently seen a revival due to its purported health benefits, black tea still accounts for over ninety percent of all tea sold in the West.

The expression "black tea" is also used to describe a cup of tea without milk ("served black"), similar to coffee served without milk or cream.

Varieties of black tea
Generally, unblended black teas are named after the region in which they are produced. Often, different regions are known for producing teas with characteristic flavors.

Varieties of black tea
Generally, unblended black teas are named after the region in which they are produced. Often, different regions are known for producing teas with characteristic flavors.

Chinese black teas
Lapsang Souchong (正山小种 or 烟小种): originally from Mount Wuyi, Fujian Province, China. It is a black tea which is dried over burning pine, thereby developing a strong smoky flavour.
Keemun (祁門) : from Qimen, Anhui Province, China, a Chinese Famous Tea. The aroma of tea is fruity, with hints of pine, dried plum and floweriness.
Dian Hong (滇紅): from Yunnan Province, China. Well known for dark malty teas and golden bud teas.
Ying De Hong (英徳紅): from Guangdong Province, China. The tea has a cocoa-like aroma and a sweet aftertaste, one can find a peppery note.
Jiu Qu Hong Mei (九曲红梅): "Nine Winding Red Plum" from Hu Fou district, Hangzhou City, Zhejiang Province, China. This tea is characterised by tight fishhook-like leaves with a lustrous black color. The infusion is brightly reddish and has a long smooth aftertaste.
Tibeti (藏茶): originally from Ya'an, Sichuan Province, China. A unique tea that can also be called brick tea; it is well known as "Tibetan tea" for centuries.

Indian and Sri Lankan black teas
Assam: from the state of Assam, India. Full bodied, strong and distinctively malty tea from the lowlands of Assam.
Darjeeling: from the state of West Bengal, India. Thin bodied, floral and fruity tea from Darjeeling with defining muscatel tones. Today often processed as a mixture of black, green and oolong elements, though still classed as black.
Munnar: from the state of Kerala, India.
Kangra: from the state of Himachal Pradesh, India.
Nilgiri: from the state of Tamil Nadu, India. Intensely aromatic, strong, and fragrant tea from the Nilgiri Hills of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
Ceylon: from Sri Lanka. Strong yet light with tones of crisp citrus.

Other black teas
Kenyan: from Africa, similar to Assam.
Vietnamese: from Vietnam, similar to some cheaper Yunnan teas, with a pleasant and sweet aroma but a more bodied and darker brew; unlike teas from Nepal or Darjeeling.
Nepalese: from uplands of Nepal. Somewhat similar to higher grades of Darjeeling.
Turkish (Çay): from Rize Province on the eastern Black Sea coast of Turkey, that is crystal clear and mahogany in colour. Prepared in a samovar or a çaydanlık, it can be served strong ("koyu" dark) or weak ("açık" light), in small glasses with cubed sugar.

Thai tea: from Thailand
Azerbaijani tea: from Caucasus in Azerbaijan
Georgian tea: from Caucasus in Georgia
Krasnodar tea: from Caucasus in Russia
Java tea: from Indonesia, has a nutty aroma, very different from both Chinese and Indian teas.
Sumatra tea: from Indonesia, similar to Java tea.
Cameron tea: from the Cameron Highlands in Malaysia; a legacy from the British?
Guatemalan tea: from Chirrepec, Coban, Alta Verapaz, a blend of Assam and China Type.

By Wikipedia

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