Process – Black tea is the most oxidized style of tea. Methods of production can vary widely depending on country and region, most black teas do however follow a few basic techniques. First the leaves are plucked and withered to reduce the moisture content of the leaves. The leaves are then rolled (often times in machines) which helps breakdown the cell walls and facilitates the oxidation process. The leaves are then left to completely, or near completely, oxidize. Finally, the tea is fired or baked to dry the leaves.
Flavor Profile – Black teas are often rich and full bodied. The flavors are varied. Some common notes can be earthiness, leather, hints of smoke, malt, dried fruit, nuts, floral, honey and spice.
Regions – The most popular black teas are from India and China, with Sri Lankan and
African black teas rising in popularity.
- Black Teas to look for:
- Darjeeling (India)
- Assam (India)
- Keemun (China)
- Yunnan (China)
- Ceylon (Sri Lanka)
- Kenyan (Kenya)