We age organic Assam black tea with real Italian Bergamot for several weeks so the tea absorbs the orange scent. Enjoy a robust (flavorings-free) Earl Grey with subtle citrus notes.
Process: The top two leaves and bud are rolled, bruised and crushed, allowing the leaf to fully oxidize and transform to a deep coppery brown color.
Flavor: Hearty, robust, full-bodied, brisk
About Black Tea
Black tea results from the full oxidation of the bud and first two leaves of the tea plant. Like green and white teas, a high quality black tea is picked early in the spring and contains a high ratio of bud-to-leaf. Unlike other teas, leaves destined for black tea production are brought down the mountain and spread thickly on the ground or in troughs where they will wither for up to 18 hours. Withering drives moisture out of the leaf and begins the conversion of delicate “juices” within the leaf into more complex liquoring compounds. The oxidation begins at this stage and continues into the rolling process. After being sorted by size, the withered leaves will be twisted, compressed, and turned multiple times, breaking down cell walls and allowing enzymes to mix with polyphenols. This brings more compounds into contact with the air and special oxidation chambers are then used to feed oxygen through thin layers of rolled leaves. Once the tea master determines oxidation is complete and the flavors and aromas properly developed, the leaves will be dried, cooled, and packaged for sale.
Grown and produced similarly all over the world, black tea is graded and sold by its size of leaf and point of origin. High quality black teas are of whole leaf with “tips” or leaf buds included and labeled “Flowery Orange Pekoe” (FOP). Names like: Assam, Darjeeling, Yunnan, and Ceylon refer to the region where the tea was grown.
Lower quality black teas prepared from fannings and dust (not whole leaf) will taste bitter and harsh. Full leaf black teas will have aromas that are clean, nutty, and bright, with flavors that are brisk, coppery, soft, and full.
As with all intensively farmed crops, conventional tea is routinely treated with a broad range of agricultural chemicals that are potentially harmful to farmers, farm workers and the environment. As opposed to most produce that is washed prior to consumption, most teas are air-dried without first being washed. The first time tea comes into contact with water is in our own cups, right before we drink it. This means that any harmful chemicals used at the gardens are released in our cups along with the tea flavor.
At Numi, they are committed to supporting organic tea cultivation to protect the health of farmers, the planet and you. Beyond delivering the highest quality of product, organic teas are cultivated without the use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides or pesticides. Choosing organic not only preserves the Earth's resources and protects the health of the farmers, but ensures that what is going into our bodies is 100% natural, made the way nature intended.
Health Benefits of Tea
More than 200-300 independent health studies have been conducted related to the benefits of tea. Most have been on green and black teas. Tea is rich in polyphenols, tannin, and flavonols (often termed catechins), fluoride, and vitamin C, P, K, and B. Although tea contains caffeine, the amounts are far less than those in coffee and produce a softer, beneficial effect. Studies suggest that as few as four servings of tea a day may have a positive impact on your health.
Antioxidants in tea are able to neutralize the damaging effects of oxygen and free radicals that are present in the body. Antioxidants slow or prevent cell damage from exposure to oxygen by creating a barrier around cell tissue. Recent studies show that polyphenols found in green tea appear in greater concentrations in white tea, helping to destroy bacteria and other organisms that cause disease. Recent studies show that polyphenols found in green tea appear in greater concentrations in white tea, helping to destroy bacteria and other organisms that cause disease.
The EGCG rich polyphenols in green tea protect skin from ultraviolet radiation damage, preventing skin tumor formation. The same compound is found to inhibit enzymatic reactions that break down collagen and elastin in skin.
Green Tea has been found to inhibit the growth of esophageal and stomach tumors in mice. Green and black tea could inhibit the development of pre-cancerous lesions as well. A recent study showed that a compound in black tea called TF-2 caused colorectal cancer cells to “commit suicide”; normal cells were unaffected. Present at higher quantities in green tea, the antioxidant epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is the focus of cancer research worldwide and identified by scientists as a cancer-fighting compound. One Japanese study highlighted a reduction in the growth of human lung cancer cells after the consumption of two to three cups of green tea.
Improved Cardiovascular Health and Reduced Risk of Stroke
A study undertaken found that of 340 men and women who had suffered from heart attacks, those who drank a cup or more of black tea daily had a 44% lower risk of repeated heart attacks compared to non-tea drinkers. Flavonoids in tea are theorized to improve the lining of blood vessels, which may account for the decreased risk. Studies show that drinking black tea helps to prevent narrowed or clogged arteries that lead to ischemic heart disease, heart attack, or stroke.
Reduces “bad” Cholesterol
One study suggests black tea to reduce LDL-cholesterol (“bad cholesterol”). Tea polyphenols may limit the absorption of cholesterol in the intestine, thus reducing the cholesterol levels in the blood. Reducing “bad” cholesterol LDL deposits, tea elevates HDL, or “good” cholesterol. Green tea, particularly oolong, may prevent arteriosclerosis.
Oral Health and Prevention of Tooth Decay and Bad Breath
Flavonoids (mainly catechins) found in green tea, have exhibited inhibitory effects on the growth of cariogenic bacteria by inhibiting the adherence and growth of plaque bacteria at the tooth surface. Polyphenols found in both green and black tea can block bacteria from producing foul-smelling compounds such as hydrogen sulfide in the mouth. Studies show the tannin and fluoride content present in tea prevents tooth decay.
Green tea may inhibit the development of arthritis. In one study, mice given green tea polyphenols were significantly less likely to develop arthritis. The study was conducted on 36 mice. Of the 18 mice that received the green tea, only eight (44%) developed arthritis. Among the 18 mice that did not receive the green tea, all but one, or 94% developed arthritis.
Green tea’s antioxidant EGCG may stimulate the body to burn calories, notably fat. In a recent study, a daily dose of 270 mg EGCG (the amount 2-3 cups of green tea) caused men to burn 4% more energy – about 80 extra calories a day.
Green tea extract has been shown to significantly increase energy expenditure (a measure of metabolism) and may have a significant effect on fat oxidation. Efficacy of a green tea extract rich in catechin polyphenols and caffeine in increasing 24-h energy expenditure and fat oxidation in humans.
Reduced Risk of Kidney Stones
In a study of more than 81,000 women 40 to 65 years of age, it was concluded that 8 fluid ounces of tea consumed daily actually lowers the risk of developing kidney stones by 8%. Furthermore, tea acts as a diuretic, stimulating the flow of urine), promoting better kidney function and aids digestion.
Slows the Aging Process
It has been shown that Green tea reduces infection and the stresses of bacteria on the system thus significantly retarding the aging process.
Blood cells from tea drinkers respond 5 times faster to germs than those of coffee drinkers. One way to measure the strength of an immune system is to measure the production of antibacterial proteins in the body. Higher levels of these proteins are associated with healthier immune systems that are better at warding off illness and disease than a weak one. A study comparing the production of these proteins in coffee and tea drinkers found that the group drinking 2.5 cups of black tea per-day exhibited production levels that were five times higher than those of the coffee drinkers. “Antigens in tea-beverage prime human Vgamma 2Vdelta 2 T cells in vitro and in vivo for memory and nonmemory antibacterial cytokine responses.”
Bring the wisest of waters to a boil and ease over a bag of Aged Earl Grey. Steep 4-5 minutes. This tea is strong enough to handle milk, yet mild enough to be served alone. For iced tea, steep 2 tea bags, cool and pour over ice.
Fair Trade Certified™ organic Assam black tea, organic bergamot.
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