Black Tea - OLD
The story of black tea is rooted in the Chinese tea trade with the West. Stronger and darker teas were favoured by the British and Dutch traders of the 18th century, because they lasted better on long voyages and appealed more to the western palate. By the 1850’s most Chinese tea regions were making fully oxidised teas, predominantly for export. As Western demand for black tea grew, the black tea production process and the related tea bush varietals were successfully transposed to newly created plantations in India, Ceylon, Indonesia and East Africa.
Black teas undergo all the basic tea making steps – the harvested tea bush leaves are withered, rolled or bruised, allowed to fully oxidise, and then dried and sorted. While nowadays much of this is done using modern technology on vast tea estates, there are still a number of high-quality black teas produced in China and India using traditional artisan methods. Earl Grey tea, which is black tea scented with Bergamot oil, and Chai, which blends black tea with aromatic spices, have also become household favourites, adding to the incredible range of this style of tea’s flavours and aromas.