Last updated: August 6, 2021

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Whether in the cold season, with a cold or with biscuits and cakes, tea is one of the most popular and versatile hot drinks in the world. But what types of tea are there and how can you recognise high-quality tea?

In our tea test 2021 we present the best products from each category. We also give you important tips and tricks about tea. Whether tea bags or loose tea, with us you will find the best tea on the market.




Summary

  • Tea is one of the most popular and healthiest infused drinks in the world. Fashionable drinks, such as matcha tea or chai latte, are an alternative to coffee and are very popular.
  • The best-known types of tea are white tea, green tea and black tea. Special varieties, such as oolong, pu erh or yellow tea, on the other hand, might be harder to find.
  • Depending on whether you choose tea bags or loose tea, you should take into account the price of various accessories, such as a tea strainer or tea paper.

The Best Tea: Our Choices

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying tea

The type of tea you should buy depends on various factors, such as your taste, whether you are expecting guests, etc. We advise you to buy several different types of tea so that you can try out what you like. We advise you to buy several different types of tea so that you can better try out what you like and also experiment further.

Kanne und Glas mit Tee

Tea comes in different forms, depending on your preferences. Depending on the variety, the length of fermentation and the addition of herbs, the flavours can vary greatly. Women who are pregnant should also consider the caffeine content of the particular type of tea. (Photo: ivabalk / pixabay.com)

Which teas are the most popular?

In the West and in Ottoman countries (Turkey, Iran...), black tea is the most popular tea. In the Far East, Asia, it is green tea. If you order tea for guests, be sure to take the respective cultures into consideration.

Did you know that there are also explicit teas for weight loss?

There are companies that boast specific detox and weight loss claims. However, conventional teas with their natural ingredients are enough to help you lose weight.

Which tea for the samovar?

Most samovars were designed after Russian or Turkish models. In these countries, people mainly drink black tea. That is why most samovars are also optimally designed for black tea, "chay".

Tea leaves are also more appropriate than tea bags. Basically, however, you should have no problems with other types of tea. The only thing to watch out for is the tannic acid content of teas you want to brew in the samovar.

Is tea healthy?

Tea is said to have a variety of therapeutic effects, some of which have been proven. If you want a tea for colds or other health conditions, green tea is best.

Did you know that an adult should drink at least 2.5 litres of water a day?

Drinking plenty of water is important for weight loss, among other things. You can also top up your water intake with delicious, healthy teas. The important thing is that you drink at least 2.5 litres of fluid.

How much does a pack of tea cost?

Tea is a relatively cheap drink. The price starts from a few euros and can go up a bit, depending on the origin, variety, size, etc.

Glastasse mit Tee

Black tea in its pure form, but also in combination with herbs and dried fruits, is a very popular infusion drink in Europe. Assam, Ceylon and Darjeeling are the best-known varieties and growing regions. (Photo: Myriams photos / pixabay.com)

What should I consider when preparing tea?

You can refine your tea with different additives, depending on your taste. For example, with honey, milk or cinnamon. In Russia, it is also popular to sweeten the tea with jam. Another thing to remember is that you should let the tea steep for three to five minutes.

Unfortunately, there is no single recipe for making tea. Each tea needs its own. Use the following table to see how you should prepare your favourite tea:

type of tea temperature infusion time
white tea 80°C 2-5 min
green tea 80°C 1-3 min
Oolong 80°C 2-3 min
black tea 100°C 4 min
herbal and fruit tea 100°C 3-6 min

Decision: What types of tea are there and which is the right one for you?

Generally speaking, a distinction is made between two different types of tea preparation:

  • Tea bags
  • Loose tea

In the following, the advantages and disadvantages of both types of use are examined in more detail. The question of which preparation method is the right one for the user will be addressed. Decisive factors include price, practicality and individual factors.

What distinguishes a tea bag and what are the advantages and disadvantages?

Tea bags offer many advantages. One of them is the convenient handling. You can simply put the bag in the cup and only have to add water. Other aids are not necessary. This simplicity is particularly advantageous for restaurants and hotels. Since no tools are needed, tea bags are also very clean to use because they are sealed. This also prevents the aroma from escaping.

Another big plus is the storage of the tea bag. This way, several different varieties can be stored in one tea box without the flavours mixing.

Advantages
  • Convenient handling
  • Clean use
  • Aroma is not lost
  • Storage in tea boxes
Disadvantages
  • Tea dust and possible loss of flavour in cheap products
  • Less choice of varieties
  • Quantity not flexible to dose
  • Cup price higher than loose tea

However, there are also some disadvantages. In cheap products, there may be tea dust in the bag or the flavour may be lost if the product has too little space in the bag. Although the variety of tea bags has increased in recent years, it is not as extensive as that of loose tea.

Another disadvantage is that the dosage of tea is less flexible than with loose tea. In addition, the cup price is higher compared to loose tea. This is the price of convenience.

What distinguishes loose tea and what are the advantages and disadvantages?

Loose tea offers several advantages. One of them is that the quantities can be better dosed and thus better adapted to the consumer's needs. In addition, the variety of teas is greater than with tea in bags. This means that individual compositions can be put together in tea shops. This ranges from inexpensive to particularly expensive products.

The preparation with loose tea is more original and so the classic teatime can be celebrated. An example of this is the East Frisian tea culture. Another advantage is that the cup price is lower compared to loose tea.

Advantages
  • Quantity can be dosed flexibly
  • Large selection
  • Individual mixtures
  • Cup price lower
  • Tea preparation more original
Disadvantages
  • Effort and time
  • Auxiliaries necessary
  • Cleaning of aids
  • Storage more time-consuming

There are also some disadvantages with loose tea. On the one hand, the effort is higher. Especially in areas such as the catering trade, where efficiency is important, it is less suitable. In addition, some tools are necessary for the preparation. These can be tea filters, a tea strainer or a tea egg. There is also a risk that tea leaves can get into the tea if the tools are not used properly.

Tea filters can only be used once and the tea infuser or tea strainer must be cleaned after use. Storing the tea is more complicated. Each variety needs its own tin so that the flavours do not mix.

Facts worth knowing about tea

What is tea made from?

Strictly speaking, all tea varieties come from the Camille tea plant. Different types of tea are created through the production or handling of the harvested leaves.

For example, in the case of black tea, the tea is fermented, which means that it is crushed, bent, etc. so that the cell structure breaks down. This is to intensify the flavour of the tea.

This is why herbal or fruit teas are not directly classified as teas but as infusions. But that's just trivia, in the end it all depends on your taste.

What types of tea are there?

Even though the classification is sometimes disputed, the following six different types of tea are generally spoken of:

  • White tea
  • Green tea
  • Yellow tea
  • Oolong
  • Black Tea
  • Pu Erh

What is the history of tea?

Tea has a millennia-old history behind it, as it was already mentioned in writing centuries before Christ. It most likely originated in China.

Matcha Tee Zubereitung

Matcha is a finely ground green tea used in Japanese tea ceremonies. This tea is one of the oldest varieties and is very expensive due to its complex preparation. In recent years, matcha has also been increasingly used in trendy drinks. (Photo: dungthuyvunguyen / pixabay.com)

The tea's triumphal march then moved through Asia, today's Russia / Eastern Europe and then to the West. But tea only became really popular in the West in the 17th century. Today, after water, tea is the most popular drink in the world.

Photo credit: 35136714-klenova / 123RF

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