why are westerners not attracted completely to green tea


Made from leaves that have not been oxidized.

Postby procarel » Feb 6th, '07, 19:42

I have been getting at least three good, sometimes four with my Dragonwell tea. I use two teaspoons for 8 ounce water at 195 degrees for 45 seconds on the first steep and 1 minute or a little longer on the subsequent steeps. I had been brewing too long and found the shorter brews tasted better to me.
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Postby Guilow » Feb 7th, '07, 03:09

expatCanuck wrote:But green tea -- yeccchh. So I suspect that there might be something more to it than comfort, experience &/or ignorance ... .

- Richard


Funny you should take it personally. My comments were general in nature.

I've never understood the "literally makes me gag" comments I've seen. I mean, what do you do when you're actually faced with a real stench if a few green leaves in a glass of hot water makes you "literally" gag?
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Postby scruffmcgruff » Feb 7th, '07, 03:21

I think it's time for a "why can't we be friends" post, before this thread goes up in flames (ooh, double entendre)...
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Postby cherryking » Feb 7th, '07, 03:31

TeaFanatic wrote:Most westerners just don't know the difference between bagged and loose green tea, and for those who do know what loose green tea is, many don't know how to steep it correctly.

Those who have figured out the wonders of loose tea have a responsibility to spread the word and help others understand the wonders of tea.


You are right, all high - quality loose green teas businessmen have respeonsibility to give professional words to help their customers to understand the difference between loose green tea and tea bag or instant green tea.

I prefer loose green teas, that is very amazing to look at green tea leaves dance in boiled water.
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History

Postby Space Samurai » Feb 7th, '07, 04:02

From what I understand, the reason is this. To the Chinese, black tea was considered an inferior tea, hence it was used for exporting. So to the western world, tea was always black.

Who knows, perhaps if green tea was exported instead, no one would of liked it, and tea wouldn't have cought on outside of East Asia. Just think, no Darjeelings.
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Re: History

Postby cherryking » Feb 7th, '07, 04:12

spacesamurai wrote:From what I understand, the reason is this. To the Chinese, black tea was considered an inferior tea, hence it was used for exporting. So to the western world, tea was always black.

Who knows, perhaps if green tea was exported instead, no one would of liked it, and tea wouldn't have cought on outside of East Asia. Just think, no Darjeelings.


Yes, Black tea take up 80% export quantity for EU an USA, because Chinese do not like Black tea, they prefer high - quality green tea, I think maybe wsterners they like coffee, so they perfer Black teas, they can add milk or sugar to Black tea, so Black tea have strong market share in USA.
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Postby expatCanuck » Feb 7th, '07, 10:26

Guilow wrote:
expatCanuck wrote:But green tea -- yeccchh. So I suspect that there might be something more to it than comfort, experience &/or ignorance ... .

- Richard


Funny you should take it personally. My comments were general in nature.

I've never understood the "literally makes me gag" comments I've seen. I mean, what do you do when you're actually faced with a real stench if a few green leaves in a glass of hot water makes you "literally" gag?


Not taking it personally. Just suggesting that personal preference might also enter into the equation.

And when faced with a 'real stench', I typically gag. :)
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Postby Chip » Feb 7th, '07, 14:33

...the gag response...soon after I first started drinking tea 7 years ago, I got a tin of RofT "sky between the branches" green tea. Up to that point, I brewed all black teas. The instructions on the tin were for generic black tea preparation...so I poured boiling water as instructed over the leaves...with results that as I recall were close to making me gag. I even called their toll free number and they never told me the correct way to brew green tea... :shock:

It took some time before I learned on my own...there was no Teachat...etc, how to brew green tea correctly. I think I knew there was goodness in the leaf that wanted to come out. I came back to this tea and did it the right way and was hooked on green tea for life. I currently drink green tea 90% of the time.

Why aren't westerners hooked on green tea??? They are rarely exposed to good green tea because the market has for years (OK, centuries) been flooded with inexpensive black tea from China, Ceylon, and India. Cheap green tea is usually lousy green tea...lacking flavor and character. We are a Coke society...it is hard for green tea to compete with palates fed on Coke, coffee...and now extreme versions of each. Green tea offers a subtle journey that few westerners care to venture into.
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Postby Michael_C » Mar 6th, '07, 16:31

I wonder if, prior to the world wars, green tea was more popular in the west. Is it possible that with the outbreak of anti-Japan thought that was so pervasive in the first half of the 20th century, green tea was rejected as being reflective of that culture? India was occupied by the English, so black teas might very well have taken over, and in a few generations, American and English folks forgot - or had erased - their knowledge of green teas. I'm curious if green tea's popularity was altered by world events. It seems emminently possible.

This last holiday season, I was going to get a good green tea for my little sister (a very normal American), and Yuki said to me "That's not a good idea. Most people don't know how to make it." So true! The fact that people here are even bringing bags into the talk - that would be like asking about Beef Bourganiase and equating it with a can of Dinty Moore. They're both beef, but very very different beyond that. Green tea takes a fair amount of practice to brew properly. It takes a fair amount of thought, also, not just 'wait for a few minutes and then drink'. The amount brewed has to be just enough, the water temperature has to be just right, and the timing has to be observed. It's not difficult, but it does take time and attention. That alone makes it almost incompatible with a typical Westerner's view of tea. Of any beverage drinking, actually. Again, none of this is difficult, just different. Ingredients matter, and some practice is required.

And, as cynical as it might be, anything which requires voluntary attention and practice will be doomed to mass unpopularity in the west.
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Education

Postby jtg0285 » Mar 30th, '07, 21:12

Michael_C wrote:And, as cynical as it might be, anything which requires voluntary attention and practice will be doomed to mass unpopularity in the west.


That made me laugh out loud. I dont believe this is a cynical statement, this country survives on things that eliminate attention and practice.

I am fairly new to green tea, which I enjoy more than any other tea I have ever tasted in my life. I have so far only used the store purchased/bagged variety. After reading this post, it seems to me that access to high quality tea goes hand in hand with the statement that made me laugh.

You have to voluntarily seek information on green tea in America to find out there is a whole other level of teas than we have available locally.

Education is a powerful thing, but something that most people will not actively pursue for something so meaningless (in the western world of coke/pepsi, sugar coated, available on every streetcorner) beverages.
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Postby Michael_C » Apr 9th, '07, 17:35

But tea is so much more than a beverage - it is history and culture, it's sometimes beautiful and sometimes dirty, and sometimes it doesn't matter at all. All of these things, all of these antipodes so happily interleaved is what makes tea the drink that it is. Who is it who coined the term "agony of the leaves"? It's someone pointing in your cup and saying "Look at the leaves standing up! You're going to have a very good day" or watching oolong slowly uncurl in the gaiwan, or getting your head around the way the yixing is muddying up the brew (in a good way).

And green tea - holy smokes, don't get me started! Room temperature green tea, with a little silt at the bottom - in a white cup - the pretty sheet of color ... what era was it that started using dark cups, so the color was hard to see? Yuck! The color is part of it, and if I recall it was white teaware which predates the dark blues and browns... I'll have to look it up again. What kind of life do you lead where you can't see the color of your tea? Green tea can be a moving few minutes or a quick grab the morning of a hangover - it's the woman who you like spending time with and talking to who can also dress up and turn into a thing of unexplainable beauty. There are a thousand years in that little cuppa green, and all you have to do is sip it and you're right there alongside. Green tea is sitting there waiting for you and you might not have even known it. And when all is said and the cup is empty, you're right back where you started, a liitle better off for the experience, as trivial as it might seem.
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