Theo Sinensis wrote:Thanks for that. It brings me to my next question. If one actually likes the strong flavour of these chopped-up particles, how do I go about finding a full-leaf black that gets me what I want?
Does an Assam or Ceylon tea have that degree of strength, or do I need to look at African and Chinese teas only?
I have some samples coming from Upton, so maybe I can answer these questions myself in a few days, but I think it's better to ask people here with experience.
Well, it really depends what you want. You're probably going to have to do some experimenting and taste-testing to determine what you really like. There's nothing wrong with liking strong tea, if that's what you're into. Many bagged teas are blends of assam, ceylon and other teas to get a particular taste. (BTW, I believe the History Channel had a great show on tea).
There are many strong black teas out there. One thing to keep in mind is how you brewed your bagged tea. Oddly enough, if you let it sit for a long time, you may simply be thinking that the loose isn't strong enough because you haven't brewed it the way you like it. While many people will tell you to do this or that, what it basically comes down to is what you enjoy. While I may not be able to drink your tea made to your specific way, if you're happy, who am I to judge? So, experiment with different teas, different amounts in the teapot and different brewing times.
A small confession. I am/was a teabag person. However, some of the loose leaf flavored blacks have change my opinion of loose tea. The loose tea I drink now is vastly superior to anything I could get in a bag. I am more likely to drink loose teas because of the flavor.