Types of Tea: Orthodox and CTC Tea
CTC: Crush, Tear Curl is a method of processing tea in which the leaves are passed through a series of cylindrical rollers with hundreds of sharp teeth that crush, tear, and curl the tea into small, hard pellets. Tea produced using this method is generally called CTC.
Orthodox teas are generally bright and brisk and have a multilayered flavor profile. Orthodox Tea is produced using the traditional methods of Tea production which includes plucking, withering, rolling, oxidation and drying.
The basic types of tea are White, Green, Oolong, Black
- White Tea is essentially unprocessed tea.
- Green Tea is plucked, withered and rolled.
- Oolong Tea is one of the most time-consuming teas to create.
- Black Tea also utilizes all five basic steps, but is allowed to oxidize more completely.
About Grades of Tea
These are the main grades of Tea
- Orange Pekoe (OP)
- Broken Orange Pekoe (BOP) is the next grade below Orange Pekoe which designates a broken leaf.
- Fanning (F) is smaller than BOP.
- Dust (D)
- Black Tea.
- Green Tea.
Teas are often designated as OP or FOP. These designations are part of the grading system used for whole leaf black teas and refer to the leaf size and amount of tip in the tea. Pekoe means teas picked as 2 leaves and a bud. OP, or Orange Pekoe, is a full-leaf tea with no tip or buds. FOP, or Flowery Orange Pekoe, is a longer leaf than an OP and has some buds. Grading systems and terminology vary with tea type and country. Generally, the more whole the leaf is and the more buds it contains, the higher the grade of tea.