Learn About Tea
August 22, 2012
Once you have established the tea’s aromas and body, at long last you can begin to tease out its flavors. Using the chart as a point of departure, ask yourself what else the tea tastes like: spinach? Mangoes? Keep tasting: Like great wines, the teas will change their flavors the longer you hold them in your mouth. The flavors will also evolve as the tea cools and, in some instances, as with puerhs and oolongs, as you rebrew the leaves.
You may find more flavors than the ones I have included in the tea charts; note them down. After you’ve swallowed the tea, see how long you can continue to taste it. The final mark of a great tea is how long its flavor endures in the mouth after you’ve swallowed. This endurance is called a tea’s “finish”, or “aftertaste,” and for some teas it can last as long as ten to fifteen minutes.