Even though tea is an everyday drink for most tea drinkers, it’s also a luxury. The aesthetic, the aroma, the feel — tea is a great experience that’s meant to enjoy. And the better the tea, the better the experience. So here’s how to choose the best luxury teas for the next pot.
Tea made its first appearance in China several thousand years ago. And since then throughout history, tea has been considered a luxury. This is because not everyone has the time it takes to boil water, brew tea leaves, and drink a cup.
Tea is separated into two major categories: true teas and herbal teas. Depending on quality, each one can be considered a luxury.
White tea is a true tea, and it uses only the youngest tea buds and tea leaves of a tea plant. Usually, white tea is harvested and dried with direct sunlight. Then it's packaged for sale but it’s minimally processed. This is why white tea often has a delicate flavor profile with sweet and floral notes. Tea drinkers often reach for Silver Needle or White Peony white teas when they crave luxury.
Green tea is similar to white tea in that it’s a true tea that’s harvested and sundried. However, before green tea is available for purchase, it has to undergo a drying process. This lets green tea’s signature grassy flavors develop and shine through. Popular green teas include Matcha, Jasmine Pearl, and Genmaicha.
Although black tea is also a true tea, it has a much stronger flavor profile. This is because black tea leaves are oxidized, harvested, dried, and gently bruised. Most black teas have rich, strong, and robust notes. Some popular black teas include English Breakfast, Masala Chai, and Earl Grey.
Herbal teas aren’t made from tea plants. Instead, they’re made from herbs, fruits, seeds, and sometimes roots. Herbal teas are available in a wide variety of flavors, each boasts its own health benefits. Chamomile, ginger, and echinacea are all popular herbal tea flavors.
There are a few ways to identify quality, premium tea. First, look for large and unbroken tea leaves. This means the tea was properly cared for.
Also, don’t mistake price and brand for quality. Just because tea is popular or expensive, doesn’t mean it’s the highest quality.
Lastly, quality teas are aromatic and fragrant. For example, Darjeeling First Flush is one of the highest quality teas in the world. It’s crafted from the first harvest each year, is packed with nutrients, and has an unmistakable aroma.
Choose great tea we have curated for the perfect VIVA tea experience.