Tea by Strength

The strength of a tea is determined by various factors - the size of the leaf, where it's grown or how it's processed. The British introduced a grading system for black tea based on the appearance of the tea leaves, with the unbroken and pristine whole leaf being far superior to that of the broken leaf. This system is still being used today by Sri Lanka, India and Kenya - the main producers of black teas. During processing, especially after the drying process when the leaves become more brittle, they often break into smaller pieces of various sizes. They are then sifted and graded based solely on their appearance in leaf size. Some of the descriptions used such as 'flowery' indicates a presence of small leaf buds whereas 'golden' or 'orange' can indicate the presence of golden tips on the tea leaf buds or the colour of the tea liquor. The descriptions don't refer to taste, which is a common misconception e.g. Orange Pekoe doesn't taste like orange. Following is a breakdown of the British Grading System.

WHOLE LEAF

SFTGFOP - Special Fine Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe (smallest whole leaf) FTGFOP - Fine Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe TGFOP - Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe GFOP - Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe FOP - Flowery Orange Pekoe FP - Flowery Pekoe OP - Orange Pekoe

BROKEN LEAF

GFBOP - Golden Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe GBOP - Golden Broken Orange Pekoe FBOP - Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe          BOP1 - Broken Orange Pekoe 1 BOP - Broken Orange Pekoe BPS - Broken Pekoe Souchong

Generally, the more cut, torn or crushed a tea leaf is the stronger the flavour of the black tea.  Whereas the presence of tea buds or golden tips somewhat softens the liquor and produces a higher grade tea. However, a tea's origin can also play a big part in the strength of a tea as this is determined by the soil, rain, temperatures and altitudes. Assam traditionally produce strong teas, whereas Darjeelings produce fairly mild teas. Both tea growing regions are in India but it's their temperatures, soil, altitude and rain conditions that produce different characteristics and totally set them apart from each other. This can also be said for other tea growing regions, giving them all a somewhat different strength or varying flavour characteristics.

For green teas the strength and variance in flavours is also determined in part by the temperatures, soil, altitude and rain conditions but how they're processed is what sets their flavours apart the most. Traditionally, Chinese green teas tend to be lighter in flavour than those from Japan, which are generally stronger and darker in appearance. Green teas can be more economical to drink as you can re-brew the same leaves up to 3 times (in the same day).

Oolong teas are semi-fermented and due to the different oxidation levels, each oolong produces a different flavour and aroma. The less oxidized oolongs are similar to a green tea but the more oxidization they receive the stronger the brew and the closer it is in flavour and appearance to a black tea and therefore stronger. Oolongs can be infused multiple times (2-3) and often present new flavours on each infusion.

High in antioxidants and polyphenols white tea is a great go-to tea for a healthy beverage. Prices often reflect the quality of the tea with the higher grades consisting of the first white buds, whereas the lower grades also include large leaves. White teas are the mildest in flavour of all teas as they are also the least processed - basically just picked and dried.



Assam Dimakusi BOP

Assam Dimakusi BOP

A dark, malty and strong broken leaf tea.

From $7.75

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English Breakfast Organic

English Breakfast Organic

Strong, classic blend of Ceylon teas

From $6.25

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Scottish Breakfast

Scottish Breakfast

A classic medium strength, refreshing tea

From $6.25

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Tea for Sunday

Tea for Sunday

A full bodied tea complemented with the subtle sweetness of vanilla

From $8.75

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Battalgalla OP

Battalgalla OP

Single Estate - medium strength Orange Pekoe

From $8.00

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Dhelakat Assam TGFOP

Dhelakat Assam TGFOP

Indian Tea - Single Estate - malty & fine quality tea

From $8.75

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Hathikuli Assam CTC Organic

Hathikuli Assam CTC Organic

This is an organic, full bodied malty brew.

From $7.75

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Irish Breakfast

Irish Breakfast

Traditional strong malty blend of Assam leaves

From $7.00

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Pu-erh

Pu-erh

An aged tea with red liquor and earthy taste

From $8.25

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Yunnan FOP

Yunnan FOP

An earthy tea, softened by the addition of golden tips

From $8.00

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Australian Breakfast

Australian Breakfast

Medium to strong blend, great as a morning cuppa

From $7.75

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Hajua Assam SFTGFOP

Hajua Assam SFTGFOP

Indian Tea - Single Estate - malty & fine quality tea

From $10.00

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Jasmine Chung Feng

Jasmine Chung Feng

Exquisite, premium jasmine green tea

From $16.50

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Jasmine Downy Pearls

Jasmine Downy Pearls

Buddha's Tears - Hand rolled premium jasmine tea

From $21.50

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Lung Ching Grade 1

Lung Ching Grade 1

Also known as Dragonswell - Has a soft & superior taste

From $16.50

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Russian Caravan

Russian Caravan

A Chinese tea smoked over pine - Smoky flavours

From $7.75

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Shimizu Organic

Shimizu Organic

The quality of this tea is evident in its smooth finish & complex palate

From $16.50

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Tea Centre Darjeeling FTGFOP1

Tea Centre Darjeeling FTGFOP1

The fresh spring fragrance of the first harvest resonates in both the flavour and aroma.

From $8.00

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Yorkshire Blend

Yorkshire Blend

A medium to strong blend of Ceylon black tea

From $6.00

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Yunnan Finest FOP

Yunnan Finest FOP

Mostly fine tips gives this tea a delicate but full rich taste

From $14.00

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Australian Sencha

Australian Sencha

Full bodied but with a soft aftertaste

From $9.50

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Dimbula OP Organic

Dimbula OP Organic

Bright tasting, medium strength Orange Pekoe

From $8.50

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Genmaicha

Genmaicha

Savoury tea with roasted rice and popcorn

From $9.25

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Gunpowder Organic

Gunpowder Organic

A large leaf tea with soft light finish

From $8.00

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