Single origin tea leaves are indicators of a specific region that produces specialized tea. The uniqueness lies in the fact that the tea produced is only restricted to that area. It praises the region as well and also highlights the skills and craftsmanship of the people that produce the tea. Soon enough, the name comes to encompass a certain standard of tea.
The origin of the tea is one of the deciding factors that contribute to its specific flavour. It is the difference in the type of soil, altitude and climate of the region that gives a certain tea its credibility. For instance, the malty undertones from Assam tea or the muscatel taste embedded in Darjeeling tea are the trademark of these regions.
While talking about this subject, it becomes necessary to understand the meaning of ‘grades’ of tea. The term refers to the quality that each tea possesses. Single origin tea, also called single estate tea, refers to the fact that all tea leaves belong to one place and one grade also. Hence, it is called so since it denotes teas of a ‘single origin’ – coming from a single place of origin and not inherently mixed with other teas. This enables one to derive the authentic taste of the tea.
Getting the original taste of the desired tea is the driving force behind the popularity of single estate tea. It employs only one grade of tea. On the other hand, blended tea is a combination of several grades of tea that is carefully prepared to give a certain taste. To control the outcome of the tea, there is tasting and adjusting done on many levels. Thus, the process involved in making blended tea is more time consuming and resource intensive. That being said, most teas are blended in nature.
While a blended tea is characterized by mixing teas from several regions, a single origin tea is pure and inherently unadulterated. The beauty of single origin tea is that it is produced naturally. However, one should also respect blended teas since producing it is an art form in itself. Teas such as English Breakfast or Lemon Grey are blends.
There is no such rule that single estate tea is more expensive than others. It all depends on the brand of premium tea you choose and the location of the estate. There is a vast difference in quality, however. Single origin teas produce a distinct flavour and aroma that cannot be replicated elsewhere. There is a combination of factors that make this tea distinctive in nature. Each work in their own way to add to the eventual taste one receives. This is what makes it exclusive and it can also be called premium tea to some.
Blended tea adds ingredients from several regions and from different tea leaf grades that shape the taste and aroma of the final tea. This is in sharp comparison to the originality factor that single estate tea offers. The fact that is unadulterated makes it stand out. It is recognized as ‘pure’ and has more value to tea connoisseurs.
It is equally important not to be misguided. The label on the tea packet will tell you the region where the tea is grown. However, it is only after several samples that will help you understand what the authentic taste should be like.
Halmira Tea/ 20 March 2019
Halmira Tea/ 19 March 2019
Halmira Tea/ 13 March 2019
Halmira Tea/ 11 March 2019
Avneesh Newar/ 05 March 2019