Glossary / Life Style

Tea Glossary

Afternoon Tea: Refers to a British meal taken mid afternoon, comprising of sandwiches, scones,and pastries accompan
Agony Of The Leaves : expression describing the unfurling of rolled or twisted leaves during steeping
Anhui: one of the major black tea producing regions in China
Aroma: fragran flavor of brewed leaf, consisting of the essential oils of tea
Assam: Tea grown in the state of Assam, in India. These (generally black) teas are known for their strong,
Astringency: the drying sensation in the mouth caused by teas high in unoxidized polyphenols.
Autumnal: Teas harvested in autumn. The term is typically associated with teas from India and Formosa.
Bakey: tea taster expression for overfired teas
Basket-Fired: Japanese tea that has been cured in baskets by firing or drying.
Bergamot: essential oil of the bergamot orange used to flavor a black tea base to make Earl Grey tea
Billy: Australian term referring to tin pot with wire handle to suspend over an open fire in which tea is b
Billy Tea: Tea made by Australian bushmen in billy cans.
Biscuity: tea taster's expression, often used with Assam teas that have been fired well but not overly so
Black: the most common form of tea worldwide. prepared from green tea leaves which have been allowed to oxi
Black Tea: Tea that has been fired or dried after the fermentation or Oxidation period of manufacture.
Blend: Tea taster who decides on the proportions of each different tea required to produce the flavor of a
Bloom: tea taster's term to describe sheen or lustre present to finished leaf
Body: tea taster's term to denote a full strength brew
Bold: large leaf cut tea
Bondemae: a form of tea ceremony where all the implements are carried in a bon, or tray
Brassy: unpleasant acidic bite from improperly withered tea
Break: auction term referring to a lot for sale, usually 18 chests or more.
Brick Tea: Common grades of Chinese and Japananes tea mixed with stalk and dust and molded into bricks under hi
Bright: denotes a bright red brew or light leaf, as opposed to a dull brown or black color.
Brisk: a tea high in astringency. Also a trademarked characteristic of Lipton tea.
Broken: smaller leaf style usually created during manufacture by passing the leaf through a cutter
Caddy: The name given to a tin or jar of tea, which takes its name from the Chinese or Malayan word 'catty'
Caffeine: stimulating compound present in tea
Cambric Tea: a very weak tea infusion in an excess of milk and sugar
Camellia Sinensis: Botanical name given to the tea bush.
Caravan Tea: Tea taken by camel from China to Russia before modern transportation.
Catechins: class of polyphenol present in high concentrations in green tea, but found in varying levels in othe
Ceylon: teas made in Sri Lanka
Cha: The word for tea derived from the Chinese language.
Chabana: flower arrangement in the tokonoma
Chai: tea. Often refers to masala chai, or spiced tea, a strong black tea infused with milk, sugar, and sp
Chaire: container of matcha for koicha
Chaji: a complete tea ceremony, consisting of sumidemae, kaiseki, koicha and usucha
Chaki: container of matcha for usucha
Chakin: white linen cloth used to wipe chawan
Chanoyu: literally “hot water for tea,” the word for the Japanese tea ceremony
Chasen: bamboo whisk
Chasen-Toushi: procedure for cleaning implements during chanoyu
Chashaku: scoop for tea, made out of bamboo, ivory or other material
Chest: classical tea package, usually made of wood and aluminum-lines, used to ship tea from plantation
Chesty: tea taster's term signifying off odor in tea from the wood in the tea chest
Chunmee: Chinese green tea, said to resemble the shape of human eyebrows.
Cloning: Cuttings taken from old tea bushes which are allowed to root and then are planted to produce new tea
Congou: A general term used to describe all Chinese black teas regardless of the area in which they are grow
Coppery: bright infusion of good quality black tea
CTC: stands for Crush, Tear, and Curl, a machine-based process which macerates the leaves by pressing thr
Darjeeling: Tea grown in the Darjeeling region, a mountainous area around the Himalayas, of India. These (genera
Dashibukusa: special cloth used to hold chawan in koicha
Dhool: refers to the tea leaf during fermentation, noted for its coppery color.
Dimbula: A district in Sri Lanka (Ceylon) that produces full bodied black teas.
Dust: the smallest grade of tea, this is typically associated with lower quality, but is prized for its qu
Earl Grey: A black tea treated with the oil of bergamot which gives the tea a scented aroma and taste.
English Breakfast Tea: A name for the tea blend which originally applied to China Congou tea in the United States. In Brita
Estate: A tea growing property that may include more than one garden under the same manger ship or ownership
Fannings: small, grainy particles of leaf sifted out of better grade teas
Fermentation: used in the process of preparing black and oolong tea, this step involves allowing the natural brown
Fibrous: teas which contain a large percentage of fannings
Firing: the process of rapidly heating the leaf, either with hot air or in a wok, to quickly halt fermentati
Flat: teas lacking astringency or briskness
Flowery: used in grading the size of tea, it typically indicates a leaf style with more of the lighter colore
Flush: Refers to the timing of the tea harvest. 'first flush' is the early spring plucking of new shoots.
Formosa: tea produced in Taiwan, typically oolong teas
Fukusa: silk square cloth to use for wiping implements: generally, a man's is purple, woman's is orange, gir
Full: strong tea without bitterness and posessing good color
Fumikomidatami: tatami mat next to the host, where the tea is placed when offered to the guest
Furo: portable brazier for holding the kama, used from May to November
Genmaicha: green tea with toasted rice
Golden: denoting the orange colored tip present in high quality black tea
Gong Fu: meaning performed with care, this typically refers to a style of brewing with many repeated short in
Grade: Term used to describe a tea leaf or particle size of leaf.
Grainy: term used to describe high quality CTC teas
Green: unfermented, dried tea, more commonly found in China and Japan.
Green Tea: Tea that is withered immediately, and often steamed and/or fired before oxidation can begin.
Gunpowder: Normally a Chinese tea, but today could be any young tea which is rolled into smaller pellet size ba
Gyokuro: A high grade Japanese tea a produced by a special process in the Uji district of japan. It is made f
Haiken: guests viewing items used in a tea ceremony
Hard: pungent tea, desired in some Assam teas
Heavy: a thick, colory infusion with little briskness or astringency
Herbal Infusion: Often referred to as 'herbal tea' or 'herbal tisane'. These teas are mixtures of herbs and do not c
High Tea: The name given to a meal served late afternoon to early evening which is a mixture of afternoon tea
Hikibishaku: method of placing hishaku on kama which emulates holding a bow & arrow
Hirademae: tea ceremony without any tana
Hyson: A type of Chinese green tea meaning 'flourishing spring'. Young Hyson is this type of tea which is
Infusion: The process of extracting elements from tea, herbs, fruits or berries by submersing in boiling water
Izumae: fixing one's kimono after sitting down
Jasmine: black tea scented with jasmine flowers, typically made with green Pouchong tea as the base
Jat: Type of tea brush normally applied to its origin. For example a tea comes from the China or Indian J
Kaiseki: a light meal served prior to the cups of tea in a chaji
Kakemono: hanging scroll in the tokonoma
Kama: kettle, usually iron, for holding the boiling water
Kandy: A city in Sri Lanka (formally Ceylon). Medium grown at altitudes between 2000 ft and 4000 ft above
Kashi: sweet served along with the tea
Kashiki: tray for holding kashi
Keemum: A fine grade of black leaf China Congou tea produced in the Anhui province.
Kensui: waste water container
Kenya: A country in Africa that produces fine black teas.
Kiribishaku: method of placing hishaku on kama
Kogo: incense container
Koicha: formal portion of chanoyu, with thick tea
Kyogamae: method of holding the hishaku as if looking into a hand-held mirror
Lapsang Souchong: A Chinese black tea which is fired (dried) over a smoky (pine wood) fire to impart its characteristi
Light: liquor lacking body or thickness
Malawi: African tea producer whose teas are mainly used for blending purposes as they are colory with good f
Malty: slightly over-fired tea, sometimes desirable
Matcha: the tea used in chanoyu: made of tea leaves ground into a powder, which retain their natural color
Meat Tea: Another term for High tea.
Metallic: tea taster's term to denote coppery taste of some teas
Mizusashi: cold-water container
Mizutsugi: container for replenishing the mizusashi
Mizuya: preparation room next to the tea room
Muddy: tea taster's term to denote a dull, blackish color of the infusion
Natsume: specifically a jujube-shaped chaki, though the term is sometimes used generically
Nijiriguchi: small square door where guests enter the tea room
Nilgiri: A district in the hills of southern India that produces excellent black teas.
Nose: the aroma of the tea
Nuwarah Eliyah: A Ceylon tea, high mountain grown at altitudes above 4000 ft sea level. The tea is light with full f
Okibishaku: method of placing hishaku on kama
Omotesenke: school of tea started by Sen no Rikyu (d.1591) through his great-grandson, Sen Sosa
Oolong: A form of tea characterized by lighter brews and larger leaf styles. This tea is typically understoo
Oolong Tea: Partially oxidized tea leaves produced in China and most oftenTaiwan (formally called Formosa).
Orange Pekoe: Referring to size of leaf, not quality or flavor, this term indicates a larger-size grade of whole l
Orthodox: prepared using a technique which leads to larger leaf styles mirroring hand-produced teas.
Pan-Fired: A kind of Japanese tea that is steamed then rolled in iron cauldons over charcoal fires.
Pekoe: derived from baihao, the white hairs of the new buds on the tea shrub, this term currently refers to
Pekoe Souchong: The third leaf from the tip. Larger and more course than the newer shoots.
Plain: tea taster's term to denote dull liquor with sour taste
Plucking: the process of harvesting the tea by cutting the flush from the growing tea shrub.
Polyphenols: astringent compounds present in tea
Pouchong: A kind of scented Chinese or Formosan tea derived from the Cantonese method of packing tea in smalle
Pruning: Selectively cutting back of the tea brush, so that it maintains its shape and help increase yield.
Pu Erh: a type of tea most notably from the Yunnan province of China. Damp green tea that has been fermented
Pungent: tea taster's term to denote a very astringent tea
Ro: sunken brazier for holding the kama, used from November to May
Rolling: the process of crushing the leaves to initiate fermentation and impart twist.
Rooibos: Harvested in the wilds of South Africa. This herb boast many healing properties.
Russian Tea: The name given to a hot tea poured into a glass over a slice of lemon. Sometimes sugar or honey are
Rwanda: An African tea producer, whose tea are used for blending purposes. Rwanda tea has a bright coppery c
Scented Tea: Green semi fermented or black teas that have been flavored by adding flower petals, fruits spices an
Self Drinking: rounded, well bodied tea that can be served unblended
Semi-Fermented Tea: Tea that has been partially oxidized before being fired and dried. Most often referred to as Oolong
Sencha: The most popular variety of green tea in Japan. A beverage to be consumed daily.
Shifuku: tied silk bag for holding the chaire
Single Estate Tea: A blend of teas from one particular estate, plantation, or garden.
Smoky: tea taster's term for teas that have been fired over smoky flames, imparting a smoky flavor
Smoky Tea: Black tea from China and Formosa that has been smoked over a wood fire such as Lapsang Souchong.
Soft: tea taster's term for underfermented teas
Souchong: A large leaf black tea. Originated in China, Souchong tea was made from a small bush whose leaves we
Specialty Tea: A blend of teas that takes its name from the area in which it is grown: a blend of teas blended for
Stalk: describes teas with presence of red stalk pieces from a hard plucking
Sumidemae: the arranging of charcoal in front of the guests
Tana: shelving used for displaying implements
Tannin: The name the tea industry uses for polyphenols contained in tea and are largely responsible for the
Tarry: tea taster's term for teas that have been fired over smoky flames, imparting a smoky flavor
Tat: shelf made of wire mesh or burlap used to spread the leaves out for withering and fermentation
Tea Caddy: A term used to describe a container used for storing tea. Often decorated with gold and fine jewels
Tea Taster: An expert judge of leaf and cup quality tea at all stages of production, brokerage blending and fina
Tea Tree: A tea bush or plant which has been allowed to return to its wild state and grow back into a tree.
Temae: presentation of a part of the tea ceremony
Tetsubin: an iron 'teapot' style kettle with a handle, sometimes used in place of a kama
Theaflavins: orange red potyphenols unique to fermented teas such as black tea, and formed from the condensation
Theanine: unique amino acid in tea.
Theine: synonym for caffeine
Ti Kuan Yin: Iron Goddessof Mercy- a distinctive type of oolong tea typically longer-fermented and possessing a d
Tip: Used to describes the ends of leaves on a tea bush.
Tippy: teas with white or golden tips, indicating high quality
Tippy Teas: Teas which contain a large portion of tips and denoted as TFOP or TGFOP for teas originating from In
Tisane: Dried herbs or fruits are infused in water and often called 'Herbal Tea'. Because Tea leaves from t
Tokonoma: alcove for placing a scroll, flower arrangement or specially-displayed items
Tuocha: bowl tea. A form of brick tea comprised of pu-erh tea pressed into a bowl shaped cake.
Twist: Before fermentation, the leaves need to be crushed to initiate oxidation. This imparts the curled ap
Two And A Bud: the ideal plucked tea for production, consisting of the new tea shoot and the first two leaves
Usucha: less formal, final portion of chanoyu, with thinner tea than in koicha
Uva: A high mountain district in Sri Lanka that produces quality teas.
Vintage: Used to describe teas from the same harvest at market.
White: a special type of green tea. Distinguished by the presence of the white hairs of the tea flush (baih
White Tea: Rare teas of fine quality. White teas are known for their high antioxidant content and subtle flavor
Winey: mellow quality, characteristic of some Keemun teas which have been given time to age
Withering: the first step in production of most teas. Involves letting the fresh leaves wither for some period
Woody: tea taster's term indicating an undesirable grass or hay flavor in black tea
Yixing: pronounced ee-hsing, this region in China is noted for its purple clay, used to produce distinctive
Yunnan: Tea grown in the Yunnan province, in the southwest of China. These black teas are known for their sp

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