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Green Tea

Wikipedia: Green_tea | Teaviews: green-tea 
Last Updated: Mar. 9, 2015 

About Green Tea

Loose-leaf green tea with dark green, flat leaves, slightly broken, and a few stemsLoose-leaf Sencha, Japanese Green Tea, Crop of Photo by André Helbig, CC BY-SA 3.0.
Green tea is a type of tea that has been processed to stop oxidization (contrasting with black and oolong teas). The oxidation is halted by heating, usually by steaming, pan-firing or baking, which destroys the enzymes that lead to oxidation, thus preserving the green color of the tea leaf.

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 teas

Green tea is produced in many different regions, but the main two traditions of green tea production are Chinese and Japanese.

Bright green tea in ceramic cup, on wooded table with slatsCup of Sencha, Japanese Green Tea by Christian, Public Domain.
China tends to produce pan-fired green teas, whereas Japan tends to produce steamed varieties, although there are exceptions to both these rules, like 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 aroma

Because 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 temperature

In 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 tea

Many 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 tea

The 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.

Further Reading:

1. U. Maryland's Reference on Uses of Green Tea in Complementary Medicine - Well-referenced with numerous citations to recent scientific studies.

Recent Green Tea Reviews — RSS rss icon

50 / 100
Picture of Green Tea

Green Tea from Great Value

Style: Green Tea – Region: ?????
Aug. 13th, 2018

The good news is, it ain't that bad. The bad news is, it ain't that good. Hence I'll take a page from the singular member of the Gerry Rafferty greatest-hits collection and rate this "right down the line"—the 50% line, that is.

The dry-bag, wet-bag and in-cup aromas barely exist. Though the base flavor of the ...

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75 / 100
Picture of Japanese Sencha (Sachets)

Japanese Sencha (Sachets) from Harney and Sons

Style: Sencha – Region: Shizuoka, Japan
Jul. 30th, 2018

Surprisingly good for a tea bag. I feel like I've been saying that a lot lately (which reminds me that I have a couple reviews to add), but with all the terrible tea bags out there, it's still a surprise when a bagged tea taste much like the loose leaf version.

I'm not going to describe this in detail for two reaso...

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53 / 100
Picture of Kokeicha (g)

Kokeicha (g) from De Theefabriek

Style: Kokeicha – Region: Japan
Jul. 3rd, 2018

I have no idea if I'm doing this right; I may update my review if there are any developments.

The loose tea is visually very interesting. Small dark green "sprinkles" that I believe I'm supposed to put directly into the cup and add hot water. They partly dissolve, making the liquid a lovely murky swamp green.
I am ...

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73 / 100
Picture of Green Tea

Green Tea from Farmer Brothers

Style: Green Tea – Region: ?????
Jun. 30th, 2018

This probably is the best food-service green tea I've had so far, overall. Travelers should like this if the lodging or conference offers it, as it is comparable to or better than some common name-brand greens. You just need to be patient with it while brewing, and/or use one of the smaller sippy-cups these places te...

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44 / 100
Picture of Gunpowder Green Tea (Loose)

This is one of the cheapest loose leaf teas I've ever seen, so I'm trying not to judge it to harshly, but it's just not very good. It's smoky, of course, but not too much if the temperature isn't too high. The overall flavor is vegetal, tasting like cooked carrots and green beans to me. It's pretty sour and astringent,...

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Most-Rated Green Tea

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Green Tea - Classic

Brand:Bigelow Tea
Style:Green Tea
Region:?????
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Teabag
13
12 Ratings
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Gunpowder Green Tea - Temple of Heaven

Brand:Numi Organic Tea
Style:Gunpowder Green Tea
Region:?????
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Teabag
53
10 Ratings
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Tamayokucha

Brand:Two Leaves Tea
Style:Tamaryokucha (Guricha)
Region:China
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Sachet
25
8 Ratings
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Emperor's Clouds and Mist Green Tea

Brand:Teavana
Style:Clouds & Mist (Yun Wu)
Region:China
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
49
8 Ratings
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Gyokuro Imperial Green Tea

Brand:Teavana
Style:Gyokuro
Region:Japan
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
86
7 Ratings

Top-Rated Green Tea

Picture of Wild Snow Sprout Tea

Wild Snow Sprout Tea

Brand:Wild Tea Qi
Style:Green Tea
Region:Yunnan, China
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
99
3 Ratings
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Liu An Gua Pian Green Tea

Brand:TeaVivre
Style:Lu An Melon Seed
Region:Xiuning, Anhui, China
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
97
4 Ratings
Picture of Huang Shan Mao Feng Green Tea

Huang Shan Mao Feng Green Tea

Brand:TeaVivre
Style:Mao Feng Green Tea
Region:Huangshan, Anhui, China
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
97
5 Ratings
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Ancient Baked Heart Tea

Brand:Wild Tea Qi
Style:Green Tea
Region:Dali, Yunnan, China
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
96
3 Ratings
Picture of Premium Tai Ping Hou Kui Green Tea

Premium Tai Ping Hou Kui Green Tea

Brand:TeaVivre
Style:Taiping Hou Kui
Region:Huangshan, Anhui, China
Caffeine:Caffeinated
Leaf:Loose
95
3 Ratings

Varieties, Kinds, or Types of Green Tea

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