1. All tea comes from the same plant.
Whether black tea, white tea, oolong tea, green tea, or pu-erh tea, it all comes from the camellia sinensis plant. The varietals, oxidation level, and processing techniques differentiate each type of tea. Herbal blends are actually not “real” tea, since they come from other botanicals.
2. It’s polite to slurp your tea.
As with wine, professional tea tasters slurp their tea from a spoon to experience the full flavor of the tea on all parts of their palate.
3. Tea is the second most popular drink worldwide, after water.
North Americans might favor coffee and soda overall, but worldwide, tea is still the most common drink, second only to water.
4. Tea has more caffeine than coffee.
Pound per pound, tea leaves contain more caffeine than coffee. However, we use much less tea to make a cup of tea than to make a cup of coffee, so the overall caffeine content in a cup of tea is usually less than in a cup of coffee.
5. Rooibos can only grow in one spot in South Africa.
This popular caffeine-free drink is very particular about the soil and climate it needs in order to grow. It can only be cultivated in the mountainous region of Cedarberg, South Africa.
If you already knew these facts, you’re on your way to becoming a tea guru! Thankfully for the rest of us there’s the Ultimate Beginner’s Guide To Tea video series and tea sets.
You can also learn tea facts like these in our new Private Tea Classes at the Mission-Castro Tea Lounge. Over the course of one and a half hours, you’ll be guided through a variety of premium teas while learning about tea history, brewing techniques, tasting tips, and more.
For those of you who aren’t in the Bay Area, we’re still here to answer your tea questions! Send your tea questions to us, and every couple weeks we’ll feature one of your questions!