The five types of tea that all come from one plant
Green, white, oolong, black, and puer tea are all types of tea that come from the Camellia sinensis plant, but they are processed differently, resulting in unique flavors, aromas, and health benefits.
Here are the main differences between these five types of tea:
Green tea is made from unfermented tea leaves that are quickly heated to stop the oxidation process. This preserves the tea's natural antioxidants and gives it a fresh, grassy flavor with a slightly bitter taste. Green tea is often enjoyed plain or with a bit of honey or lemon.
White tea is made from the youngest and most tender leaves of the tea plant, which are handpicked and dried in the sun or lightly steamed. Like green tea, white tea is unfermented, but it has a milder, sweeter flavor and a lighter color. White tea is often brewed at lower temperatures to preserve its delicate flavor.
Oolong tea is partially fermented, meaning the leaves are oxidized for a shorter period of time than black tea. This results in a tea that has a range of flavors, from floral and fruity to nutty and smoky. Oolong tea can be enjoyed plain or with a bit of sugar or milk.
Black tea is fully fermented, which gives it a strong, bold flavor and a dark color. Black tea is often enjoyed with milk and sugar, and it is commonly used in blends such as English Breakfast and Chai.
Puer tea is a fermented tea that undergoes a unique aging process, which gives it a rich, earthy flavor and a smooth finish. Puer tea is often compressed into cakes or bricks and can be aged for many years, like fine wine.
Each type of tea has its own unique flavor profile and health benefits, so it's worth trying different types to discover which one you like the most.