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Green Tea vs Black Tea: What's The Difference?

Posted by Bean & Bean on
Green Tea vs Black Tea: What's The Difference?

When it comes to tea, avid tea drinkers will attest to the fact that black and green tea are two of the most common. Although they come from the same plant and offer similar health benefits, they differ greatly in taste and color.  

Let's discuss some similarities and differences between black tea and green tea 

Similarities between black and green tea  

There are more differences than similarities between black and green tea. This is because there are a lot of varieties and tasting notes that make them quite different from each other. Yet, both are enjoyed worldwide and can be brewed into a variety of blends. Both black and green tea are considered relaxing and have some caffeine content., And no matter what, both are considered to be healthy and detoxify the body and mind. 

Differences between black and green tea

The key differences between black and green tea are as follows: 

1. Where they come from 

Black tea and green tea are cultivated and harvested from various regions in Asia and  India. Black tea is primarily grown in China and India. Some of the most well-known farms are located in Assam and Darjeeling. As black tea is a commonly served cultural drink in Asian regions, countries like  Nepal and Vietnam also produce specialty black teas infused with flowers or other citrusy flavors.  

Green tea, meanwhile, is commonly grown in China or Japan. Matcha tea, which is a type of green tea, is a staple in Japanese culture. Even though black and green tea go through different methods of processing, tea can still be produced anywhere tea plants can flourish. But history and the cultural factors surrounding green and black tea have impacted their locations, as only certain regions are more associated with one type of tea than the other.  

2. How they’re made and processed

One of the significant differences between black and green tea is how they're processed. The level of oxidation that both experience differs greatly. Oxidation describes whether the leaves have been exposed to oxygen for a certain period. For example, if you've had anything that’s been dehydrated, it was oxidized.   

Right after they are harvested, green tea leaves are heated to halt the oxidation process by steaming or pan-firing. This is also done to retain that bright green color and minimize oxidation. In contrast, black tea is allowed to oxidize once it's harvested. This is why black tea has brown and black colored leaves. 

3. Caffeine content

 Each tea has different levels of caffeine. Black tea is higher in caffeine than green tea. Green tea contains about half as much as black tea's caffeine. However, some shade-grown green tea, like matcha, can be grown to have higher caffeine content, while some specialty teas may have relatively low caffeine levels.  

4. How they’re brewed

This is another significant difference between black and green tea. When black tea is brewed, it's recommended to use boiling water, and in general, black tea is steeped for 5 minutes or less. In Indian culture, black tea is boiled and steeped for longer with many other additions, such as dairy or spices.  

Green tea is usually prepared with lower-temperature water and is enjoyed without any additives. Steeping the tea for too long in hot water can burn the leaves and release a bitter taste. For some green teas like Japanese shade-grown green teas, even lower temperatures (around 140 degrees) may be required and are usually steeped for around one to two minutes. 

5. Color 

This is a pretty obvious factor. One can easily spot the visual difference between black and green tea. Black teas usually look darker and brew up a reddish to copper-colored brew. On the other hand, green teas tend to be more delicate and lighter in color. Their Brews can look golden to a rich mossy green.  

6. Taste

Black teas will usually brew up a strong flavor with notes of fruit, honey, and spice. Indian black teas are robust in flavor, while Chinese black teas are full-bodied yet a little mild. Black teas may taste a little bitter without additives or sugar. 

Green teas have a light body and may have nutty or oceanic tones. Chinese green teas especially tend to be lighter and mellow, whereas Japanese green teas have a darker green color with an umami flavor. Green teas do not have a very strong taste and are usually preferred mild. 

Make time for tea time

Tea can also be a great alternative to coffee. Black tea is an especially suitable alternative for coffee drinkers, as it has a robust and potent flavor and caffeine levels somewhat comparable to coffee. Green tea, however, can be the perfect start to your morning routine due to its various health benefits. 

If you’re looking to incorporate tea into your daily or weekly routines, we suggest our black tea for those mornings that have the most Monday energy and Jasmine green tea for later in the day to relieve anxiety and stress. 

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