Made by infusing tea leaves with the scent of flowers, floral scented tea yields a brew with a floral fragrance. This unique quality is reflected in the phrase: "When you marry the tea leaf with the flower, the tea's virtues are amplified twofold." Blossoms bloom and fade; spring, after all, does not last forever. But suppose we have a way of incorporating the fragrance of a flower into tea leaves, and contain its fragrance within. Then, when we brew a cup of floral scented tea, we can bask in the fragrant memory of the flowers and console ourselves, "Why worry about flowers fading? With floral scented tea, spring is eternal."

Scented tea is also known by other names: smoked tea, smoke-prepared tea, incense-scented tea and scented tea. In ancient times, spices were added to green tea during tea production, but scented tea only became formally accepted as a type of tea after jasmine scented tea made its appearance in history books. Scented tea is a gift from nature. Today, floral scented and herbal teas are well-loved in the East and the West. In fact, since ancient times some Chinese herbal teas have played a role in home remedies for generations. While herbal tea may be considered a type of drug (medicine), a cup of tea daily improves health without causing addictions and other adverse side effects. Long-term consumption can strengthen the body, relieve tension, calm the mind, improve sleep, alleviate flatulence, aid digestion and so on. Herbal tea, therefore, can be considered a modern health beverage.

The production of floral scented tea is a complex process, using flower petals and tea leaves as the common base ingredients. Tea buds are layered with fresh, fragrance-emitting flowers which have met food standards; requirements vary according to the different species of flowers.

Since tea leaves are dry in nature and flowers are moist, a special scenting procedure is used to harmonize their different physical properties. Unlike regular tea, the production of floral scented tea involves infusing the tea buds with the fragrance from fresh blossoms. The combination of the flower's fragrance and taste of tea results in a delicate floral scent and a mellow, sweet flavor. The production process marries the principles of physics with the wonders of chemistry. There is definitely a science to the method.

According to research, tea leaves contain a chemical substance which absorbs fragrances. When the tea buds come into contact with the flowers, the aroma molecules of the flowers attach themselves to the structure of the tea buds and maintain their hold, even after numerous firing sessions. This is because the aroma-absorbing tea buds rely on the water molecules in the flowers as a vector to soak up the aroma. Thus, the drier the tea buds and the bigger the degree of moistness between the leaves and the flowers, the more efficient the delivery and the stronger the aroma-absorption capability. The buds from green tea are used mainly for scenting tea leaves. Usually, roasting or drying the green tea leaves yields the best quality tea. The process integrates the taste of the green tea with the flower's fragrance. The resulting scent is dense and long-lasting.

Other available types of scented tea are black tea and oolong tea, such as Osmanthus Oolong Tea, Rose Tea, etc. Recently, there is also the emergence of the Suppressed Dark Tea Tuocha. Its raw materials comprise the premium Pu-Erh tea and a fragrance-releasing flower which is added during the "suppression" process. It has a small, compact form, with a pure, distinct flavor. Examples of these include the Rose Tuocha and Chrysanthemum Tuocha.

The production of floral scented tea comprises these basic steps: firing the tea buds (multiple times), layering or mixing in the blossoms, scenting, withering, removing the blossoms, and repeating the whole process until balance is achieved, before packing. There are many varieties of floral scented tea, each with their distinct personality, e.g. Jasmine, White Orchid Tea, Pearl Orchid Tea, Osmanthus Tea, Rose Tea, and so on. Jasmine Tea, with its top-notch quality and exquisite fragrance, is the most popular, followed by the Pearl Orchid Tea which has a light, refreshing fragrance. Osmanthus Tea is light yet long-lasting. Jasmine Tea makes up about 70% of total scented tea production. The best teas come from Fuzhou, Fujian and Suzhou, Jiangsu.

During the tea-brewing process, a tea master usually begins by studying the appearance of the tea leaves and inhaling its scent to enhance his enjoyment of the tea. Being mindful of the proper techniques of tea-brewing will also help you to bring out the virtues of the floral scented tea and make its aroma last as long as possible. Brewing tea the right way also leads to healthier drinking.

Expressions (Excerpts) of the Romantic Flower Tea

In the world of tea, flower teas, herbal teas and medicinal teas are based on a similar philosophy. By definition, both the beautiful blossoms and the roots, stems and leaves of fragrance-emitting plants found in the herbal and floral teas that we brew daily, are classified as herbal teas.

There is a wide variety of flower teas in the world of tea. Nevertheless, most people's general understanding and knowledge are usually limited to varieties such as rose, lavender, jasmine, osmanthus, and chrysanthemum. As more people understand and embrace the concept of healthy living, herbal tea has become more popular, leading to its more widespread presence in the market. The following varieties of herbal tea, all of which are in high demand, were selected to provide you with a deeper understanding of their individual attributes.


Jasmine Flower Tea

Often used as a complimentary ingredient to scent tea buds? there's Jasmine Generous, Jasmine Hydrangea, Jasmine Hongqing, Jasmine Pearl, etc. The leaves of the jasmine are green and the petals pure white, and exude an exquisite and elegant fragrance. Sometimes, while brewing jasmine tea, a slight orchid-like fragrance can emerge. This is because during the process of scenting jasmine tea, a small quantity of magnolia or white orchids is used as a base.


Osmanthus Tea

Much loved by the Chinese people, the osmanthus flower has a very light and ethereal fragrance. After undergoing a special scenting process, the resulting tea has a long-lasting, elegant fragrance. Long-term consumption of osmanthus tea can help soothe a dry throat and alleviate disharmony of liver and stomach. Then there is osmanthus oolong tea, made from osmanthus and oolong tea base. This recipe creates an unusual floral tea with a more refined fragrance.


Rose Tea

The fragrance of roses is incorporated into many varieties of tea. The mesmerizing aroma emitted by rose tea that is brewed using rose petals or rosebuds can soothe the body and mind, calm anxious spirits and bring an uplifting effect to low emotions. The rose species is also rich in vitamins such as vitamins A, B, C, etc - particularly Vitamin C, which is effective for conditioning the liver and, strengthening a weak gastrointestinal system and alleviating constipation. In other words, its aromatic properties can be harnessed to regulate the human endocrinal system as well as to enhance one's beauty.

Additionally, there's rose oolong tea, which fuses rosebuds with the tart sweetness of oolong tea. You get a taste that is even more refreshing than drinking oolong tea on its own. This tea can contribute to weight loss effects. These days, we have observed the emergence of the rose mini tuo tea. With pu'er tea leaves as raw material, roses are added during the 'autoclave' process, resulting in a tea with small, delicate leaves, a pure mouth-feel and the fragrance of roses flowers.


Chrysanthemum Tea

Of the representative teas, this category includes Golden Chrysanthemum, chamomile, etc. Even just drinking plain water boiled with chrysanthemums can induce natural therapeutic effects like detoxification and reducing swelling. Chamomile, particularly, has a mild, refreshing and pleasant taste. The practice of using chrysanthemums as a beverage has already existed in the west for a long time. If the Westerners enjoy chrysanthemum tea because of its sweet, fruity taste, the Chinese use the beverage for its therapeutic efficacy. Nevertheless, it should not be drunk by pregnant women and people with allergies to pollen. Today, the emergence of the chrysanthemum mini Tuo Tea can be observed. Its raw material is high quality pu-er tea blended with chrysanthemum flowers during the scenting process.


Pearl Orchid Tea

The bottom underside of the pearl orchid tea leaf tea is green; in its dried form, the tea leaf is compact, tall and graceful in shape. After undergoing a series of scenting processes, the aromatic properties from the pearl orchid blossoms and the tea leaves bond. This produces a pearl orchid tea with a very rich, mellow fragrance.


Craft Tea (Artisanal Tea)

Flowers and tea leaves are tied together with a wire. After brewing the blend of tea and flowers, you have tea within the flowers, and flowers within the tea; the effect is truly sublime. A representative tea is the lily fairy (Seven Fairies), created from binding jasmine blossoms and tea buds together. Within the lightly baked green tea category, there is the Golden lotus colourful garment (Jin Lian Ni Shang) (Golden Gourd), made by binding golden lotus and tea buds together. It can be used to soothe inflammation during hot weather. Most people tend to go for these two varieties of craft tea.

Water used to brew chrysanthemum tea should be about 85 C in temperature. It must be stressed: always select glass-made tea sets which can withstand high temperatures for the brewing of herbal tea. Moreover, through the transparent glass, you can enjoy the sight of flowers and tea leaf bundles unfurling beautifully in the water. At different water temperatures, the tea soup generates different colours. The natural fragrances emitted, relax the body and mind, enfolding one within the embrace of nature. Immersed in this natural harmony of sight, smell and taste, one can bask in supreme enjoyment.




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