Glossary of Tea Terms

The best way to judge tea, is in the flavor. But there are more ways to describe tea than just words like "delicious", "yummy", and "fabulous". The tea that you taste can be described as earthy, smoky, astringent, clean or brassy. Tea has many terms most are not familiar with, here are a few common terms used to describe dry tea leaves and infused tea leaves.

Wiry     

Dry leaves thin and well-twisted. New Vithanakande black tea. 

Tippy

Dry leaves with many golden tips or silver buds. Tea Shop Assam black tea.

Flaky

Dry leaves that are flat and open. Organic Atama Bancha green tea.

Stalky

Dry leaves with many stems. Organic Idulgashinna green tea.

Clean

Dry leaves of the same size and color with no stalks or leaf fiber pieces.

Irregular

Dry leaves with uneven leaves of size and color.

Aroma

The scent from the infused leaves.

Body

The weight of the infused liquor on the tongue. Such as, light, medium, heavy or full-bodied.

Coppery

The bright, copper colored infused leaf. This indicates a good quality tea.

Brassy

An unpleasant metallic flavor on the tongue.

Dull

The liquor from the infused leaf laking a bright infusion.  

Muscatel

Flavor reminiscent of wine grapes from the infused leaf. This characteristic is found in Makaibari 2nd Flush tea. 

Character

A specific origin or style of tea. Makaibari teas display the unique traits of darjeeling tea. 

Bakey

The flavor caused by high temperature firing in the leaves. Organic China Sencha green tea. 

Fresh

Having a clean and purified aroma.

Light

An airy fresh aroma.

Bright 

A clean and refreshing palate flavor. 

Clean 

No astringency, just a wonderful purified flavor.