News / Tea history
All tea comes from the Camellia Sinensis plant. The difference is in how much the leaves are oxidized and processed after they have been plucked. During the oxidation process the leaves undergo chemical reactions that result in the variations of taste and colour. Heating stops the oxidation process.
There are 4 main types of tea:
Green tea may be rolled or processed and then heated quickly to stop oxidization before it truly begins to happen.
White tea is left to oxidize for a very short period before heating. White tea is usually not processed at all.
Oolong tea is partially oxidized and has some of the characteristics of both green and black tea. Oolong leaves may be rolled or twisted. Oolong are very aromatic and full of flavour.
Black tea is the most common type of tea in North America. It is fully oxidized and results in a full rich flavour and amber liquor.
Herbal teas are not made from the Camellia Sinensis plant but are infusions of herbs, leaves, flowers, fruit or other plants.
Legend has it that tea was first discovered by the Chinese Emperor Shen Nong, who was boiling water for drinking one day in 2737BC when a tea leaf happened to fall into his pot. By the time of the Shang dynasty (1766-1050BC) tea was being consumed in Yunan for it's medicinal properties.
Tea spread to Japan around 1191 when a Zen priest brought tea bushes to Japan and planted them in Kyushu. It was not until the seventeenth century that tea was introduced to Europe by the Dutch. Only green tea had been consumed until this time but it was found to spoil easily on the long trip tin damp ships to Europe. The Chinese realized that if the tea were darkened, fired and bake dried it would survive the trip without spoiling. Thus black tea was introduced to the western world!
Did you know?
• Tea is the second most consumed beverage in the world after water.
• The best tea is produced on mountainsides between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Tropic of Cancer.
• The top tea producing countries are:
Sri Lanka 7%
No matter where your tea comes from you can be assured that 3 Teas only sells the most Terrific Tasting Tea!