Green TeaWikipedia: Green_tea | Wikicha: Green_Tea | Teaviews: green-tea
Updated: Mar. 9, 2015
About Green Tea
Loose-leaf sencha, a typical Japanese green tea. Adapted from a photo by André Helbig, licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.
White tea is less processed than green tea, but tends to be more oxidized, and can have a darker leaf color. This same process also preserves the vitamin C content of the tea leaf, making green tea the only type of tea with appreciable vitamin C levels.
Green tea is widely consumed in East Asia, especially in China, and in Japan, where nearly all tea consumed is green tea. China and Japan are the origins of most varieties of green tea. With a few exceptions, the rest of the world consumed little green tea until recently. Interest in green tea is surging due both to its purported health benefits and increasing interest in loose-leaf artisan teas.
Chinese vs. Japanese green teasGreen tea is produced in many different regions, but the main two traditions of green tea production are Chinese and Japanese.
kamairicha. Virtually every region that produces tea produces some green tea, although outside of southeast Asia, green tea constitutes only a small but increasing portion of total production.
Flavor and aromaBecause of its diversity, the flavor and aroma of green teas are difficult to describe in general terms. Many green teas have a more vegetal aroma, with grassy or herbaceous tones. Some of the pan-fired green teas have a smoky aroma, and some steamed teas have an aroma suggestive of seaweed.
Brewing green tea: water temperatureIn contrast to black tea, which usually tastes best when brewed with boiling water, many green teas taste best when brewed with water substantially below the boiling point, ranging from 160-180F (71-82C). Our pages about brewing temperature for tea and brewing tea go into more depth on this topic.
Caffeine content of green teaMany websites and other sources claim that green tea has less caffeine than black tea. This is not necessarily true; the caffeine content of teas varies widely both between different types of green tea and between different types of black tea. Both green and black tea can be higher or lower in caffeine.
Other green "tea", herbal teas processed similarly to green teaThe processes involved in the production of green tea have also recently been extended to herbal teas--teas made out of plants other than the tea plant. Examples are green rooibos and honeybush. Green yerba maté, however, is not produced similarly to green tea--that term refers simply to the unroasted form.
1. U. Maryland's Reference on Uses of Green Tea in Complementary Medicine - Well-referenced with numerous citations to recent scientific studies.
Varieties, Kinds, or Types of Green Tea
Best Green Tea
The notion of the "best" Green Tea is subjective, because different people have different tastes. We present the most often-rated and highest-rated teas in this category, and allow you to draw your own conclusions.
Most Often-Rated Teas