Everything About Black Tea
At first, people thought that black tea and green tea were two different tree species. In fact, black tea and other teas may be different products from the same tree. For example, the leaves picked from the same tree can be used to make Pu'er tea, raw Pu'er tea or Dianhong, or even moonlight white tea according to the white tea process. However, some tea trees are more suitable for making black tea, and some are more suitable for making green tea, oolong tea, etc. .
Classification of black tea
Black tea is divided into Souchong black tea, Gongfu black tea and broken black tea.
Souchong Black Tea
Souchong black tea is the earliest black tea, and Lapsang Souchong from Wuyi Mountain in Fujian is the representative of Souchong black tea. Lapsang Souchong is mostly expressed as floral honey fragrance and longan soup fragrance. Most of them choose local tea picking to make, picking one bud and two three leaves. In traditional craftsmanship, Lapsang Souchong needs to go through a special red pot and smoking step, which is now relatively rare. Why is it so rare to see Smoky Souchong now?
Tongmuguan Smoked Souchong
Smoked seedlings need to be smoked and roasted with red pine wood that can produce pine oil for more than 20 years. The pine oil will produce smoke, and the surface of the tea is covered with this layer of smoke;
The current tea is basically produced in the same year, sold in the same year, and drunk in the same year. The smoky flavor of Smoky Souchong is unacceptable to many tea customers, so the sales market is limited.
Gongfu Black Tea
Compared with Souchong black tea, Gongfu black tea has a wider production area, the most representative of which are Qimen black tea from Anhui and Dianhong from Yunnan. Gongfu black teas from different producing areas also have their own characteristics in terms of taste.
Qimen Black Tea
Qimen black tea, known as one of the world's three high-flavor black teas, has a unique Qimen fragrance;
Dianhong, on the other hand, has a unique fruity scent, depending on the mountain field of its origin, and some have the scent of plum.
Broken black tea
Sri Lankan Broken Black Tea
Broken black tea, as the name suggests, is a kind of broken or granular tea leaves. This kind of black tea is more in line with foreigners' demand for black tea. The soup is quicker and the taste is stronger. After adding sugar and milk, it can be made into milk tea.
Quality characteristics of black tea
Although there is a saying of red leaf red soup in black tea, not all black tea soups are thick red, not to mention the redder the better.
During the fermentation of black tea, tea polyphenols are oxidized to form theaflavins, thearubicins and theafucins, which are important substances that form the color and taste of tea soup. Only when the ratio of the three pigments is in a proper range can a good black tea with bright tea soup, fresh taste and sweet mellow be harvested.
So, why does black tea feel sour and refreshing sometimes? For black tea, a fully fermented tea, sourness is very likely. If the tea is really sour, there may be a problem in the production process. During fermentation, black tea will change from grassy aroma to delicate aroma, and then to floral and fruity aroma; if it is fermented too much, it will have a sour and rancid taste. Simply put, the tea is broken and rancid. The length of the fermentation time depends on the weather conditions on the day of tea making, the tea's tenderness, and the degree of twisting, etc. It is a test of the tea maker's experience.
Therefore, the same batch of fresh leaves can produce fine products or defective products. It is meaningless to only look at the raw materials.
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Black tea is a fully fermented tea. The basic production steps are: withering-rolling-fermentation-drying, which fully oxidizes the polyphenols under the action of the enzyme-promoting enzyme to form the quality characteristics of red soup and red leaves. Lapsang Souchong, Qihong, and Dianhong make us familiar with domestic black tea categories. In addition, Darjeeling black tea and Sri Lanka black tea are also well-known in the world.