Benefits of Drinking Black Tea
Traditionally, especially in the old cowboy westerns, the good guy always wore a white hat but not so when it
comes to tea drinking as black tea is definitely the good guy.
All true tea is the product of the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant. But what a difference a little oxygen
and sunlight can make. Green tea is very lightly oxidized with Oolong moderately so and black tea the most heavily
oxidized of them all. There is even a fourth variety, white tea, that rarely makes it to western shores.
The black tea leaves are plucked, washed, rolled and dried. From there they may find themselves partially ground
into a tea bag or sold more or less whole. But in whatever form the leaf makes it to market, the flavor is largely
the result of the region from which it came and the processing used there.
Black Tea in China
Much of it originated in China near Mount Wu Yi, in the Fujian Province. One style, the Lap Sang Sou Chong, is
dried by holding the leaves over burning pine. The result is a delightfully strong, smoky flavor. From the Yunnan
Province hails the tea that adopts the name of its homeland. Here is produced a dark, malty tea that is full of
India Black Tea
India, for centuries one of the world's largest tea producers, offers two with names that are possibly more
famous than the tea itself. Assam is full-bodied and with a distinctive astringency that prompts many to dilute it
with milk. The Darjeeling from West Bengal is more delicate, but still a very robust tea. Slightly spicy, it makes
a perfect breakfast drink.
Black Tea Sri Lanka
Initial efforts to grow tea in Ceylon (now known as Sri Lanka) in the 18th century were met with utter failure.
But the growers persisted and tea drinkers around the world are the beneficiaries. The black Ceylon teas grace many
fine table in their home country and throughout the world.
Vietnam has recently made efforts to join the ranks of major producers. The light aroma of a Vietnamese black is
deceptive. This dark brew has a wonderful taste that is the real deal.
Even Turkey offers a black tea that any aficionado will want to sample. Hailing from the Rize Province
on the eastern coast, this mahogany colored brew is prepared in a samovar and served up 'koyu'. The best way to
translate that word is simply to drink some. Be prepared for a jolt.
Earl Grey Black Tea
Black tea also makes for an excellent partner in traditional or modern blends. For example, the famed Earl Grey
(named after its 17th century promoter) is a sweet, perfumey blend that gets its distinctive taste from a small
amount of bergamot oil.
Whichever country you favor, whatever flavor you enjoy, sample a wide variety of black tea straight or