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Frequently Asked Questions

Tea Basics

What is Tea?

The cured  leaves and buds of a plant called Camellia Sinensis are commonly known as tea. Native to mainland South & South East Asia, the tea plant is now cultivated across the world in both tropical and sub-tropical regions. This evergreen shrub from camellia family can grow up to 17 metres in height and is usually trimmed to between three and four feet , to facilitate gathering.

Which are the different varieties of Tea?

There are 8 main varieties of Tea : White Tea,  Yellow Tea, Green Tea, Blue Tea, Black Tea, Matured (Pu-erh) Tea, Tea Flowers & Red Tea.

What is White tea?

White Tea is a rare delicacy, consisting of the first few tender leaves and new buds of the tea tree, harvested in early spring time .The leaves are silvery white often covered with white down hairs. Totally unprocessed white tea leaves are simply picked and sun-dried and consequently retain the highest concentration of antioxidants.

What is Yellow Tea?

The rarest and the most expensive tea in the world. Grown on a single mountain range in China, yellow is harvested on just one day a year, yielding only a few kilograms of finished tea. Yellow tea is slightly fermented, the leaves, warm & damp from the drying stage are lightly heated in a closed container, which causes them to turn yellow .

What is Green Tea?

Leaves are not oxidised , thereby retaining their natural verdant colour and delicate flavour. To prevent the natural process of oxidation from occurring, freshly picked leaves are dehydrated wither by Pan Frying ( Chinese Method) or Steaming ( Japanese method) , this is followed by hand rolling, drying and sorting in different grades.

What is Blue Tea?

Commonly Known as Oolong meaning “Black Dragon” in China. Blue tea is semi-fermented hence it combines the fresh fragrance of green tea with the rich & aromatic complexity of black tea.

What is Black Tea?

Black Tea is completely oxidised and when processed, undergoes the five primary steps of withering, rolling, fermentation, drying and sorting. Full bodied yet mild, these teas are generally classified based on leaf grades/size & strength.

What is Matured Tea (Pu-Erh)?

Pu-Erh or Matured teas can be found either loose or compressed .Unlike black tea, matured tea undergoes a secondary oxidation & fermentation, making it a truly unique type of tea. Rolled and shaped, they are dried in the sun and then pressed into cakes or left uncompressed. As with some fine wines, certain matured teas are renowned for improving with age.

What is Tea Flower?

Tea Flowers are composed of tea leaves sewn by hand in an artisanal manner into compact shapes that ‘Bloom’ when infused at the bottom of a teacup or teapot. Hence they are also known as ‘Blooming Tea’. Often blended with fragrant flowers like Jasmine, Dragon Lily, Rose & Hibiscus ,tea flowers are remarkably beautiful, as they slowly unfold into astonishing shapes.

What is Red Tea?

Red Tea is also known as Rooibos, it is produced from a bush known as the Aspalathus Linearis in South Africa. Red tea leaves are generally oxidised-process which enhances the flavour and produces the distinctive red colour after which this tea is named.

What are Strong & Light Teas?

Strong teas refer to the teas which yield a dark colour, medium to full bodied infusion with prominent aroma & strong flavour as a result of the oxidation which these teas undergo during processing . This includes Black, Matured / Pu-Erh and Oolong Teas. Light teas refer to the teas which yield a natural verdant colour, light bodied infusion with mild aroma & delicate flavour as they are least processed and unoxidised. This includes Green, White, Yellow and Flower Teas.

What are Herbal Teas or Tisanes?

Herbal Teas or Tisanes are made from plants other than Camellia Sinensis (the tea plant) hence they are Theine free. Many herbs ,flowers, fruits or spices for example Chamomile, Mint, Lemon Grass and Hibiscus are used to give soothing, health beneficial infusions, also if the leaves of the tea plant are not included, neither the dried product nor the liquor then it shouldn’t be referred to as ‘tea’. The correct name is ‘Herbal Infusion’ or ‘Tisane’.

What is Decaffeinated Tea?

These teas are meant for consumers who are sensitive to Caffeine. In Decaffeinated tea caffeine is removed by treating the tea with an organic solvent . It is not totally free of caffeine . After Decaffeination, a small percentage of caffeine still remains in leaf.

How to make a perfect cup of TWG Tea?

Pour simmering water over 2.5 grams of tea leaves or a tea bag per cup and infuse for anywhere between 2 to 7 minutes depending on the variety of tea. Remove leaves and serve.

What should be the water like for infusing Tea?

To preserve the unique characteristics of each variety of tea, it is essential to use only filtered water. Undoubtedly, the best tea infusion is prepared with ‘soft’ water, since a high calcium content gives rise to deposits on the surface of the cup.

How to infuse Black Tea?

For black teas, we recommend infusing 2.5 grams of tea per cup in water not exceeding 95ºC for 2 to 3 minutes. Best enjoyed in the morning .

How to infuse Oolong Tea?

For all types of Oolong teas, we recommend infusing 2.5 grams of tea per cup, in water not exceeding 95º C for 2 to 3 minutes. Best enjoyed in the afternoon.

How to Infuse Green Tea?

For green teas, we recommend infusing 2.5 grams of tea per cup in 95ºC water for 2 to 3 minutes. Best enjoyed in the afternoon.

How to Infuse Yellow Tea?

Yellow tea buds require a careful monitoring of their infusion. We recommend infusing 5 grams of yellow tea buds per cup for 3 minutes, in water not exceeding 85ºC. Yellow teas are best enjoyed in the morning.

How to infuse White Tea?

It is recommended to infuse 5 grams white tea leaves per cup, in water not exceeding 85ºC for up to 7 minutes. Best enjoyed in afternoon & evening.

How to infuse Matured / Pu-erh Tea?

For Matured Tea, it is recommended infusing 2.5 grams of tea per cup, in water not exceeding 95ºC for 5 minutes. Best enjoyed in afternoon.

How to infuse Red Tea?

For red tea it is recommended to infuse 2.5 grams of tea per cup, in water heated to 95ºC for 2 to 3 minutes. Best enjoyed in the evening.

 

How to infuse Chamomile?

It is recommended to infuse 2.5 grams of chamomile flowers per cup in water heated to 95ºC for 3 to 4 minutes. Best enjoyed in the evening. 

How to infuse Flower Tea?

To infuse tea flowers, we recommend placing one tea flower per teapot in water heated to 85ºC. Steep for 5 to 7 minutes until the tea flower blooms. Best enjoyed in the afternoon.

  

Tea and Wellness

What is the difference between Tea & Coffee?

Coffee has Caffeine and Tea has Theine. Caffeine and theine are chemically identical, both are stimulants ,the only thing that sets them apart is the concentration. Caffeine content goes instantly into our circulatory system jolting us to wakefulness, causing the pulse to beat faster and the blood to pump more vigorously. Theine in tea is a result of oxidised polyphenols which gives it a stimulant effect. We ingest lesser theine in a cup of tea than caffeine in coffee and that releases much slower in the body giving a sense of relaxation while providing prolonged alertness.

What are the Health Benefits of  Tea?

Age old beliefs in tea’s healing powers are continuously being validated by new scientific discoveries. Drinking Tea is more than a pleasant hedonistic experience .It is also an investment in a healthier future. Teas are particularly rich in Vitamins, Zinc & Antioxidants.

Digestion & Body Fatigue : Black Teas Improve Digestion and drain the body of excess fluids. It is also very effective against bodily fatigue. Pu-erh tea in particular, helps in the digestion of rich foods.

Immunity : White & Green teas are the least processed and thus contains the highest level of polyphenols and other antioxidants and are known to cool the body and stimulate the immune system

Weight Loss & Increased Metabolism : Research has shown that green tea consumption can speed up the metabolism when regularly consumed ,it helps in weight loss and certainly contributes to a balanced diet, increasing energy output and fat oxidation.

Cancer : The leaves of the Camellia Sinensis tea plant are rich in polyphenols-an antioxidant which is particularly found in Green & White teas and active in fighting & killing cancer cells without damaging the healthy tissue around them.

Diabetes : Green & Oolong Teas delay the onset of type 2 Diabetes and suppress symptoms caused by this disease, including blurred vision and kidney failure .Tea also contain compounds that could potentially replace Insulin- an essential regulator of blood sugar.

Heart Diseases : According to the scientists, Green Tea works on the lining of blood vessels, helping keep them stay relaxed and better able to withstand changes in blood pressure. It may also protect against blockage of arteries which are the primary cause of heart attacks.

Healthy Blood Cholesterol Level : Green & White teas inhibit the oxidation of Bad Cholesterol in the blood and thus maintain a healthy good cholesterol level in the blood.

Alzheimer’s & Parkinson’s : Green Tea introduces polyphenols into the body, which provide protection against free radicals, thereby slowing the degenerative effects of these diseases, while protecting and repairing damaged brain cells.

Healthy Teeth & Bones : Catechins in tea are a natural source of fluoride which keep our bones and tooth enamel healthy thus prevent tooth decay.

Anxiety & Depression : Theanine ( not to be confused with Theine) is an amino acid naturally found in tea leaves .It is this substance that is thought to provide a relaxing and tranquilising effect. It also reduces stress & relaxes the body.

Anti -Viral & Anti-Bacterial : Tea catechins have strong anti-microbial & anti-viral properties that inhibit the growth of bacteria & viruses .It also reverses the resistance of tough pathogens and thus inhibit spread of many diseases.

Detoxifier & Diuretic : Tea is primarily known to have a cleaning effect on the body due to its detoxifying and diuretic virtues. The nutrients in tea take part in the elimination of damaged cells & free radicals in the body and contribute to curbing damage caused by toxins while maintaining a healthy blood fluid level.

Skin Care : Green & White teas combat skin ageing & inflammation . Antioxidants in these teas slow down the skin ageing and prevent wrinkles . Red Tea is recognised by all scientific institutions for its medicinal benefits and especially for its anti-allergenic properties which cures skin allergies . Rooibos is also very effective in fighting skin problems like acne, eczema and psoriasis . Chamomile has always been used to treat skin inflammations, wounds and ulcers.

For Pregnant Women & Children : Red Tea or Rooibos is especially recommended for pregnant women and children as this tea is 100% theine-free, contains a high level of antioxidants and is very rich in vitamin C, mineral salts and protein making it ideal for adults & children alike.

 

Care Instructions For Tea-ware & Accessories

How to take care of the glassware?

TWG Tea hand-blown glass tea wares are made from borosilicate glass which are highly resistant to shock and heat and can be used daily if desired. However, keep in mind that sharp changes in water temperature can cause the teapots to break. Do ensure you do not rinse your glassware with cold water immediately after pouring hot water in to the teapots. Always hand wash your glassware using mild detergent and soft sponge. Rinse gently with water. Allow your glassware to dry completely before storing them in a dry and cool place. Metal attachments such as stainless steel, silver or gold-plated warmer, lid, filter and handle must be removed from the glassware before cleaning. The removable parts may be polished with an impregnated polishing cloth. 

How to take care of the ceramic?

Uniting convenience of modern functional features and classic beauty, TWG Tea’s ceramic collection is enduring and timeless. You may use warm water to clean your ceramic tea accessories. Avoid using dishwashing liquid or abrasive as it may destroy its delicate coating and trimmings. To remove any stains, soak your tea accessory in a warm lemon water solution for a few hours. Then, rinse gently with clean water. Allow it dry completely. Metal attachments such as stainless steel, silver or gold plated warmer, lid, filter and handle must be removed from the accessory (except for Design Sugar Bowl and Design Creamer) before cleaning. The removable parts may be polished with an impregnated polishing cloth to retain its natural glossy finish. 

How to take care of bone china?

Classic and functional, the signature bone china collection is adorned with the signature TWG Tea logo and is perfectly suited to any tea table. Hand washing in warm water and mild detergent is recommended. Do not place delicate bone china in a dishwasher as strong dishwashing soap could damage the china over time. Rinse in cool water and you may add a cup of vinegar per litre of water to remove any stains. Air dry or wipe your bone china with a soft cotton fabric. 

How to take care of porcelain?

Composed of merely four elements: feldspar, quartz, kaolin, and water - porcelain fulfils the alchemist’s dream of transforming base elements into precious objects. TWG Tea’s exceptional porcelain collections feature original patterns of intricate 22 ct gold leaf detailing, hand-painted gold and platinum plating and sumptuous bright floral hues. This precious vessel is neither microwave friendly nor dishwasher safe. Please ensure the longevity of your porcelain collection by hand washing it using warm water only without any sponges or abrasives. Dry your tea accessory completely with soft cotton fabric before storing it in a cool and safe place. 

How to take care of crystals?

Featuring one of the finest and most delicate craftsmanship in the world, TWG Tea’s crystal tea bowl collection is unique and each meticulously handmade, highlighted by the authenticity of the original pattern; and sometimes, adorned with 24 carat gold leaves, reminiscent of the luminous constellations. The crystal tea bowls can be cleaned using mild dishwashing liquid and soft sponge. Ensure to rinse thoroughly with warm water. Air dry or wipe it gently with a soft cotton fabric.  

How to take care of precious metals?   

TWG Tea, in a provoking display of craftsmanship, has created spectacular designs in 18ct gold and silver plating, and sterling silver. With only a few pieces in the world commissioned exclusively for TWG Tea, these stunning masterpieces not only reveal the sophistication of authentic designs but also the savoir-faire of generations of craftsmen. The inner lining of the vessel may be washed with warm water alone whereas the outer part may be polished with impregnated polishing cloth. Please do not your tea accessory in a dishwasher. The glass teacup may be washed with warm, soapy water. Please ensure that you remove it completely from the metal holder. 

How to take care of samovars?

TWG Tea samovars, inspired by original antique designs, boast porcelain handles and a fine mirror polish and are made of high-grade 18/10 stainless steel to assure the quality of your tea infusion at any time of the day. Always ensure that the samovar is unplugged before cleaning. The inner layer of the vessel may be washed with warm water only as would only be used to contain water. The small teapot set atop can be rinsed with warm water with diluted white vinegar to remove any stains on the inside. Polish the outside of the samovar with an impregnated polishing cloth to retain its natural glossy finish. 

How to take care of tea trays?

As natural lacquer is a living material, preserve your TWG Tea lacquer tray by cleaning it with warm soapy water and a soft sponge. Although water resistant, lacquer wares must not be washed in a dishwasher or exposed to high temperatures. To maintain a glossy finish, polish occasionally with soft wax. 

How to take care of cast iron?

Cast iron tea wares have been used for centuries for their functionality and alluring shapes. Known to keep the tea hot, cast iron also used to be prized for imbuing tea with additional iron content. TWG Tea cast iron teapots, however, are all enamelled to protect from rust and to ensure that they can be used to prepare any varieties of tea. Teapots are crafted in traditional shapes, colours and trimmings. Hard-wearing and durable, cast iron teapot can last for many generations. To preserve its enamel and vibrant hues, only use warm water and a soft sponge to rinse the inner lining of the vessel. Its surface may be rinsed off with warm water and must be dried with lint cloth immediately. Never use any abrasive. Store teapots in an airy place away from moisture. Do not place your cast iron tea wares in a dishwasher. TWG Tea cast iron teapots are not meant to be put on stoves or over direct fire. 

How to take care of acrylic?

This elegantly designed yet durably made of superlight acrylic plastic carafe which is BPA-free is the perfect accessory to serve a refreshing glass of iced tea indoors or out. As a serving vessel, it is not recommended to pour hot water directly in it. Fill the carafes with ice cubes up to the rim, then pour in the hot tea thereafter. The acrylic carafe is not dishwasher safe. Please hand wash with mild dishwashing liquid and soft sponge to clean. 

How to take care of stone ware?

The traditional Yixing Teapots originated from China and their original shapes date back from the 15th century. Made of clay, a material found naturally in the region of Yixing in eastern China, these teapots are particularly adapted for black teas, blue teas and matured teas. At each infusion, the clay absorbs the flavour of the tea, developing a protective coating at the bottom of the teapot. To preserve this natural protection, the Yixing teapots should not be cleaned with soap or any detergent. Only rinse the teapots with fresh water after use. To condition a Yixing Teapot for the initial use, add a teaspoon of oolong tea or Pu-erh into it, then pour hot water up to the rim and allow it to infuse overnight. This creates the initial protective coating for the Yixing Teapot.