Leaf tea or tea bags? This is the Great Debate that occurs every time tea is discussed. What is the Golden Rule when preparing tea? Here we tell you why you should choose tea in threads or why you can opt for the bags without losing quality.
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Leaf tea or bagged tea?
This is the Great Debate of any gathering of tea lovers. The most purists will defend loose tea to the end, the most practical will recommend the bags. Who has the reason? Is there only one way to taste tea?
The answer is no, since there are as many ways to taste tea as there are other drinks, such as whiskey or coffee. The way you prepare your tea depends on inherited customs, the climate, the time you have available, whether you are at home or not, and even the characteristics of the tea you have chosen.
If there is something that characterizes tealovers, it is that they are always willing to innovate, investigate preparation systems and try new flavors. So let’s be objective in this debate by looking at the pros and cons of leaf tea and tea bags.
Differences between leaf tea and tea bags
– The size: In a packet of leaf tea you will find buds, whole leaves or large pieces of leaf. In the bags, due to handling and packaging, if they include very broken leaves and tea dust. Even when you choose the best quality tea in bags , it will have less essential oils than the loose ones, since these are partially lost when the leaf is broken. Essential oils are responsible for the aroma and flavor of the tea.
– The taste: When you prepare an infusion with the whole tea leaf or in large pieces, you manage to extract subtle and complex flavors and aromas, thanks to the essential oils that have been preserved. In the case of tea in bags, you will notice that there is a predominant flavor and the most subtle ones are not always noticeable.
– Time: the tea in bags is prepared quickly and you do not need more than a few seconds for its content to begin to pass into the water. In leaf tea, the strands first absorb water, swell, and then release their active ingredients. In both cases the preparation time depends on the type of tea and your own taste, but in general leaf tea needs a couple more minutes to be ready.
– The practicality: Tea in bags was born precisely for this reason, because of the practicality to prepare it. You don’t need more than a cup and water. In the case of loose tea, you will need a filter and a teapot, which are not available in offices or workplaces.
– Performance: The tea bag has the right amount necessary to prepare a single cup of tea. In the case of loose tea, a teaspoon of tea per cup is always recommended, but you can add a little more water and obtain a good medium-cup infusion.
– Tannins: If you use loose tea, you can prepare an infusion that preserves all the properties of the leaf, including the tannins, which are what give it the astringent flavor typical of each variety of tea. Some people prefer a not-so-strong tea, so teabags may be a good choice for them.
– Conservation: loose tea is preserved longer than inside the bags. You can store it in an airtight and light-tight jar and you will see that it stays fresh for a long period.
– Own blends: Many tea lovers are eager to experiment with blends of flavors. Although a wide variety of mixes, you may want to mix teas, herbs or flowers. In this case, loose tea is the best option.
This is the Golden Rule of tea:
In the bagged tea vs. leaf tea debate, tea lovers choose what they like best or suits the time of day or where they are. You can listen to the opinions of the experts and inform yourself, but the Golden Rule is that you open yourself up to trying new flavors and prepare your tea the way you like it best.
After all, when we talk about tea, enjoying is the only thing that matters.