Black tea accounts for more than 90% of all teas sold in the West. Americans drink black tea hot throughout the day, as an alternative to coffee. We also enjoy iced tea, most of which are made from black tea. Earl Grey, English Breakfast and Irish Breakfast are all popular blends made from black teas.
Black teas offer a bolder, stronger flavor range due to their longer period of oxidation during manufacture.
If you like your teas bold and strong you will definitely want to have these teas in your collection:
- Yunnan – fully bodied and slightly peppery, but with a light maple sweetness. Yunnan comes from a remote region in China.
- Assam – slightly malty, rich and dark. The Assam region is the largest tea producing district in India, and their black tea is a standard in the industry for its rich, heavy liquor. It’s also a good tea for blending.
- Ceylon (Sri Lanka) – medium to strong, depending on region. The island of Sri Lanka is known for producing three types of tea depending on the altitude where they are grown: low-grown, medium grown, and high-grown. Teas grown in the higher elevations (5,900-6,500 ft.) of Sri Lanka have a good balance of flavor.
- Darjeeling – a light tea, with a nutty, fruity, and/or floral flavor. Produced only in the Darjeeling region of India, Darjeeling is also known as the “champagne” of teas. It’s a great tea to enjoy in the afternoon because it’s lighter than many other black teas.
- Oolong – flavors of apricot and peach – Oolong teas fall between green and black teas, with the lighter varieties being closer to green, and the darker ones closer to black teas. Choose a dark oolong for the strongest flavor. Mid-day is a good time to brew oolong, when you can best enjoy the complex flavors and aromas. Oolongs improve with multiple infusions.