| Terms Describing
Baggy - an unpleasant
taste, normally resulting from the tea being carried or
wrapped in unlined Hessian bags.
- an over-fired tea, with the result that too much of
the moisture has been driven off the leaf while drying.
Bitter - an unpleasant
taste associated with raw teas.
- a liquor having both fullness and strength as opposed
to being thin.
- an unpleasant metallic quality similar to brass. Usually
associated with un-withered tea.
- denotes a lively fresh tea with good keeping quality.
Brisk- the most live characteristic.
Results from good manufacture.
- taint caused by extreme over drying during manufacture.
Character - an attractive
taste, specific to growth origin, describing teas grown
at high altitude.
- a tea producing a harsh, undesirable liquor with taste
- indicates useful depth of colour and strength.
Common - a very plain, light
and thin liquor with no distinct flavour.
- a natural precipitate obtained as the liquor cools down.
Dry- indicates slight
over-firing or drying during manufacture.
- not clear, lacking any brightness or briskness.
Earthy - normally caused
by damp storage of tea, but can also describe a taste
that is sometimes climatically incoherent in teas from
- a liquor lacking fullness. No substance.
- not fresh, usually due to the age of the tea as tea
tends to lose its characteristics and taste with age,
unlike some wines.
- a most desirable extension of character, caused by slow
growth at high altitudes. Relatively rare.
- can be due to over fermenting during manufacture and/or
bacterial infection before firing or drying, which gives
the tea an over ripe taste. Unlike wines this is not a
desirable taste in tea.
- a good combination of strength and colour.
Green - when referring to black
tea liquor denotes an immature 'raw' character. This is
mostly due to under fermenting and sometimes to under
withering during manufacture.
- a very pungent liquor, a desirable quality in tea.
Harsh - a taste generally
due to the leaf being under withered during manufacture
resulting in a very rough taste.
- a thick, strong and coloury liquor with limited briskness.
High-fired - over fired
or dried but not bakey or burned.
- describes a neutral liquor with no body or pronounced
- lacking strength and depth of colour.
- desirable character in some Assam teas. A full,
bright tea with a malty taste.
- not bitter or flat.
- a sharp coppery taste.
- a dull opaque liquor.
- a suspicion of mould.
- a liquor that is 'clean' but lacking in desirable characteristics.
Point - a bright, acidic
and penetrating characteristic.
- astringent with a good combination of briskness, brightness
- refers to cup quality and denotes a combination of the
- a very coarse and harsh liquor.
- a bitter, unpleasant taste.
- the opposite of briskness. Tea lacking any live characteristics
and is caused by inefficient fermentation and/or drying.
Stewed - a soft liquor
with undesirable taste that lacks point. Caused by faulty
firing, or drying, at low temperatures and often with
insufficient airflow through the oven during tea manufacture
- substance in cup.
- disagreeable taste. Poor tea.
- characteristic or taste that is foreign to tea such
as oil, garlic etc. Often due to the tea being stored
next to other commodities with strong characteristics
of their own.
- liquor with good colour and strength.
- an insipid, light liquor that lacks desirable characteristics.
Weedy - grass or hay taste
associated with teas that have been under withered during
manufacture and sometimes referred to as woody.
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