Margaret Thornby’s Tea & Tea Room Talk Magazine

Tea Facts

A fascinating drink, steeped (see what we did there?) in tradition. Here we look at some of the facts about tea and tea drinking, with help from James Pogson of Northern Tea Merchants and Nigel Melican of Teacraft.

Tea Tasting Terminology - by James Pogson of Northern Tea Merchants

We all love tea – or you wouldn’t be browsing this excellent website BUT what words would you use to describe your favourite drink and the appearance of its leaves, both dry and infused? ‘Brown, Wet & Warm’ simply won’t cut the mustard!

Terminology that describes dry Tea Leaves

BLACK: – A black appearance is desirable, preferably with ‘BLOOM’. This term is used with Orthodox (Large Leaf) manufacture.

BLACKISH: – This is a satisfactory appearance for a small leaf black tea and denotes careful sorting at the factory.

BLOOM: – A sign of good manufacture and sorting (where the

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Tea History – Some Important Milestones

Ancient History

2800 BC approximately. According to legend Emperor Shen Nung discovers tea when some leaves from a tea bush blow into a pot of boiling water.
551-479 BC Tea was being drunk in China during the lifetime of Confucius.
350 AD First written reference to tea drinking in a dictionary compiled by Kuo Po in China.
400 approx. Tea established in China as a medicine.
618-906 The Tang Dynasty during which time tea gains popularity as the national drink of China – in the form of compressed brick tea, crumbled and boiled to make a beverage.
733 Lu Yu – the Chinese father of

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