How tea is made: complete instructions for those who are in love with tea

Have you ever marveled at the amazing journey that goes into every cup of tea? From Camellia Sinensis, to your cozy and comforting mug – it all starts with a few essential steps! We’ve created this comprehensive guide to share how traditional teas are made from crop to cup – no ‘plucking leaves from plants’ here. Come on an incredible adventure with us as we uncover just what makes up the perfect brew!

Harvest of the fresh tea leaves

Wondering how tea is made? We’ve got you covered! From harvesting to grading, we’ll take a deep dive into the fascinating process behind everyone’s favorite brew. Get ready for your tastebuds to be transported as we explore this ancient beverage and uncover its captivating history – plus get insider tips on what sets each type of tea apart from the rest. Let’s jump in together!

What is tea?

If you’re wondering how your favorite cup of tea is made, let’s start with the main ingredient – Camellia sinensis! This evergreen shrub is native to tea garden in East Asian countries and its tea leaves are used in thousands of delicious varieties. In this section, we’ll be exploring what makes each one unique so that the next time you take a sip, it will feel like an even more special experience.

A brief historical overview

Step into the world of tea and explore its rich history! Tea is thought to have originated in tea garden in Yunnan province, where it was initially brewed as a medicinal soup. Over time however, different processes were developed including pressing the tea leaves into cakes so they could be transported long distances.

One really interesting fact about Chinese monks – who are credited with discovering how to make this beloved beverage – is that drinking tea gave them an enhanced sense of focus during times when meditating for extended periods!

Did you know matcha green tea originated centuries ago in Japan? Thanks to a group of Japanese monks who traveled to China and studied Buddhism, the delightful drink made its way across seas.

tea leaves

Originally it was broken from bricks and mixed into water as a coarse powder – likely far more bitter than what we enjoy today! But over time: through diligent shading, steaming, drying drills – each type of tea has become tastier with every innovation. Now that’s something truly special!

How tea is made: what raw materials are used for production?

Who knew that all “true” teas come from the same Camellia Sinensis plant? Although this might surprise tea lovers, it is true! The variety of flavor profiles arises from variations in where these tea plants are grown and how their tea leaves get harvested and processed. These small differences create a wonderfully wide assortment to explore – which particular type will you try today?

How and where is tea made?

From the depths of majestic mountains, to coastal plains and rolling hills – Camellia Sinensis is enjoyed in all corners of the world! 

  • Capturing local flavors from China’s Jasmine & Oolong teas, 
  • Japan’s indulgent Matcha & Sencha blends; 
  • Sri Lanka and India’s classic Darjeeling Chai. 

Even beyond traditional tea leaves, invigorating tisanes crafted with flowers such as chamomile bring a whole new layer of flavor profiles that can be appreciated by all!

How and where is tea made

Brewing the perfect cup of tea isn’t just about pouring hot water over a bag and waiting for it to steep. It’s also not as simple as plucking tea leaves off trees! In fact, traditional teas commonly found in cafes require an age-old process that takes up to three years before those flavorful little gems are suitable for brewing.

Tea plants can reach heights of 50ft but they’re usually kept at waist height so you don’t have too much trouble harvesting young shoots which tend to produce more leafy goodness than taller specimens anyway. So grab your favorite mug and join us while we take a deep dive into how some amazing flavors come alive through this ancient tradition – enjoy!

Camellia Sinensis plant: what kind of plant is it and are there subspecies?

Did you know that contrary to popular belief, all the delicious varieties of tea — from green and white teas to black and everything in between — come from just one special tea plant? It’s called Camellia sinensis. But even though herbal infusions are often referred as “teas” well… they aren’t quite teas at all!

Fun fact: this beloved beverage we enjoy so much comes in two main subspecies – Sinensis variety & Assamica – both offering us their own unique flavors and experiences cup after cup.

Camellia sinensis sinensis

Camellia sinensis sinensis is the Chinese subspecies of the amazing tea plant – a resilient shrub that can thrive up to 2,700 meters in elevation!

Camellia Sinensis

This evergreen grows into an impressive dome shape of 10-13 feet tall with delicate tea leaves between 1-6 centimeters long and 1.5-2 centimeters wide. In springtime, these bright green shoots emerge as if welcoming you for your next cup o’ joe or afternoon pick me up!

Camellia sinensis assamica

The Camelia sinensis assamica is an Indian subspecies of tea plant that could reach impressive heights—imagine a 59-foot-tall tree-like shrub! Even its tea leaves are much bigger than the Chinese variety, with 8 to 30 centimeter long foliage. This big tea leaf variant prefers humid subtropical climates and low lying regions so it can thrive in ideal conditions while providing higher levels of caffeine and polyphenols for those who appreciate their morning cuppa.

Camellia sinensis var. assamica

How is tea made step by step? Detailed guide and production secrets from tea experts

Let’s dive deep into the fascinating world of tea production and uncover everything you need to know. From plucking tea leaves off branches, through processing them in various ways – by taking a look at each type of tea separately – we can finally put all that curiosity about нow is real tea made!

How is real tea made? Step 1 – Growing the plants 

Tea is a complex and nuanced drink, with each sip holding the potential for a unique flavor experience. Before tea leaves can be processed however, they must first be grown – an often overlooked part of the process! But we all know that when it comes to food or beverage production, where ingredients are sourced from plays an incredibly important role in how things end up tasting.

How is real tea made Step 1 Growing the plants

Did you know even subtle changes in temperatures and rainfall over where the plants were growing affects their final flavor? For farmers seeking out sweeter teas specifically; shading off sunlight means catechins will reduce while more Theanine leads to smoother, sweetened blends served just right every time!

Step 2 – Harvest of the fresh tea leaves

Everyone has their own preferred tea preference, and it’s easy to understand why. Depending on the type of plucking used when harvesting Tea Camellia Sinensis leaves – imperial, fine, medium or coarse – you can expect entirely different results in terms of flavor! 

Step 2 Harvest of the fresh tea leaves

Imperial will create subtler tasting teas while coarser varieties produce much more earthy flavors. It all depends on where your taste buds take you for a journey with every cupful! So don’t be afraid to experiment with unique types of pluckings next time before settling down into that cozy armchair; comfort should always come from quality ingredients afterall.

Tea lovers, did you know that every one to two weeks the Camellia Sinensis (tea plant) can regenerate another flush of fresh tea leaves? This means there’s always a new cycle for high-quality tea. Not only is it good in taste and quality but its harvest – “the first flush” being the highest grade kind – also commands an elevated price point!

Timely transport from farm to factory (within 24hrs) ensures peak flavor and maximum nutrition are captured so we get nothing less than premium cuppas with each sip.

Step 3: The Tea Leaves are Sorted and Graded

After taking their first steps in the tea factory, carefully selected tea leaves are ready to embark on an exciting journey! On one branch of this adventure you have white teas made from young and tender buds.

Step 3 The Tea Leaves are Sorted and Graded

Then there’s matcha or oolong, where more mature flavors come into play – all crafted by experienced tea masters with years of expertise behind them. Every tea leaf has its own unique story waiting to be told; just add hot water and let your taste buds do the discovering!

Step 4 – The Tea Leaves Wither and Get Rolled (or Ground)

After picking, the green tea leaves are laid out to breathe for a little bit. This process evaporates moisture from them and makes them more flexible so they won’t break as easily – all depending on the type of tea being made!

At factories around the world, this air-drying takes place in large troughs with wire mesh fitted overtop for 12 hours; by removing up to 70% of water content during this time, it helps create delicious cups we can enjoy every day.

Step 4 The Tea Leaves Wither and Get Rolled

Why roll tea leaves?

Have you ever heard of loose tea leaf? It’s the creme de la creme of teas and comes in all sorts shapes, sizes, colors—you name it. Gyokuro leaves are rolled into tight pine-needles while bhoa zhong is curled like a ribbon and Tie Guan Yin takes on a round pellet shape!

But how do they get this way? Well – rolling is key! So take note next time your favorite type of tea steeps: that unique form was achieved by some careful rolling technique my friend.

Step 5: The Tea Leaves Undergo Oxidation

Spending quality time with nature can make a big difference in the cup of tea you enjoy! After carefully harvesting, producers lay out green tea leaves on bamboo trays and expose them to air that is precisely controlled for humidity.

This interaction between hot climate-controlled air and enzymes within the leaves sparks an amazing transformation – from catechins to theaflavins or arubigans! Depending on how long this oxidation process takes, different types of teas are created – green teas will be less oxidized while black teas have longer oxidation times resulting in bolder flavor profiles.

The Tea Leaves Oxidation

So why not switch up your daily routine by exploring these incredible changes happening inside each sip a finished tea?

Green and white tea varieties have a lighter flavor profile thanks to the art of prevention! To keep these delicacies at their finest, experienced producers cut off oxidation with either steaming or wok-firing. This carefully executed drying process ensures that each leaf is ready for its journey from baggy to cup – so you can enjoy all those subtle sweet notes in every sip.

What do I need to know about processing tea leaves and why is it so important?

Our journey into tea production starts with the orthodox method, a widely used technique all around the world. Let’s dive in to see how it works! Tea leaves are set out on mats and left to wither away – either slowly outdoors or quickly under temperature-controlled conditions.

This step helps evaporate some of its moisture content, making them more pliable during further processing such as rolling and drying – so they don’t break apart easily at each stage!

Orthodox method

If you’re a fan of tea, there’s one particular traditional way it is produced that’ll have your taste buds in bliss: the orthodox production method. This classic technique involves withering, rolling and oxidizing – not to mention drying off! We may be familiar with what goes into making most cups of tea but let us now take a deeper dive and discover exactly how this process works.


After tea leaves are harvested, they enter the withering stage to prepare for production. To make them more supple and less likely to break during processing, some of their moisture content escapes while drying out on special mats – either indoors or in sunlight! White teas experience a gradual process whereas yellow & green ones may have none at all.


After a delicate drying process, the tea leaves are carefully crafted into different shapes and sizes. For instance, shou mei goes through no rolling at all – it’s simply allowed to dry in its natural form. On the other hand, ball-rolled oolong is transformed into tight little pellets that we just can’t get enough of! Each type of tea takes on unique forms with plenty of variety for us to explore along our tasting journey.

how tea is made


Tea is made using a special process that involves oxidation. The type of tea you get depends on how long the oxidization takes – if not at all for green teas, longer durations for black teas, and shorter periods with incomplete oxidation to make oolong tea!


Crafting a quality cup of tea is no easy task! After the leaves are picked, they must be dried to reduce their humidity by 60-65% and lock in flavor. This ensures that when brewed, all of the aroma and taste released into your favorite mug will take you on an amazing journey!

CTC Method  

Let’s take a closer look at the alternative way of producing tea: Crush Tear Curl (or CTC)! This process creates low-grade teas that are ideal for use in traditional tea bags. 

But don’t let that fool you into thinking these blends lack flavor – they tend to be more bitter than other varieties, and unfortunately can often contain additives due to it being so easy to blend lower-quality leaves with this method! Why not pick up some different types of black tea next time you’re shopping around? You’ll find a world of flavors waiting outside your usual cup of joe!

Black, white, green, oolong – are there differences in the production of different types of tea? How is tea flavor made?

Have you ever wondered what makes the varieties of tea so special? Oolong, green and white teas all come from one single plant – Camellia Sinensis! However, each variety offers something different in terms of flavor profile, color, caffeine level, and strength. A delicious journey awaits your taste buds- start exploring today to find out which type is perfect for you.

White tea is a subtle but refreshing beverage, featuring young tea leaves and unopened buds for an even subtler flavor than that of green tea. Meanwhile, oolong teas give you a balanced taste between the extremes of black and green teas with their partial oxidation process – something truly unique! For those seeking something extra special, there’s matcha-creamy smoothness thanks to fine powdered leaves that are sure to leave an impression on your palate.

Pu-erh tea is a unique kind of fermented tea that undergoes an additional fermentation process after oxidation, producing beneficial probiotics and one-of-a-kind polyphenols. Not only does this give pu-erh its signature dark color but also has a deep flavor profile, unlike any other type of Camellia sinensis – white, green, or black!

Read also other articles for tea lovers:

White tea making process: what do I need to know?

White tea is a specialty type of tea that’s cultivated in Fujian, China. It gets its name from the fine white hairs (known as trichomes) on both bud and small leaves – these are like armor to protect against unfavorable conditions such as bright sunlight or heavy rain during development. 

Grown for centuries using traditional methods, only young buds and sprouts of the tea plant make it into premium blends! After the leaves have been harvested, they take a special journey to becoming white tea. They’re spread out on bamboo mats and exposed to the gentle sun for drying before being brought inside for careful withering over several days. 


Our white tea is a special experience, crafted to perfection. Unlike most teas, our leaves are not rolled or fired and remain non-oxidized – the least processed of any type of tea! After 72 hours withering in carefully controlled conditions, they dry at 110°C/65°C for an exquisite taste that’s as close to fresh-from-the garden goodness as you can get!

With such little processing in comparison with other teas, one wrong move temperature-wise can ruin it all – too high heat shuts down any chance of flavor development!

When producing white tea, the leaves go through a special drying process where oxidation begins to occur and some of their parts may turn into a different color. Though many elements will be affected by this transformation, the silver buds are usually able to hold up better than the rest. After that’s done with it’s time for baking! 

This is when we put our carefully crafted product in an oven-like environment without too much heat forcing its way around so as not to disturb or damage what was made before – ensuring maximum flavor and top notch appearance once everything has been brewed afterwards!

Secrets of green tea production

Green tea is an ancient drink with a unique history. After harvesting, the leaves are allowed to wilt for a few hours to reduce the moisture content and stop the oxidation process, turning them into black or oolong tea! Chinese green teas are roasted in a pan and Japanese teas are steamed; both methods preserve that subtle green tea flavor that we all know and love.

Secrets of green tea production

Our green tea process begins with a gentle steaming, which helps preserve the fresh and grassy flavor of each leaf. We then roll them carefully before drying to set their shape – first at 110°C/70°C and once more after that at 120°C/80°C. This attention to detail ensures you get an amazing tasting cup every time!

The heat in this process is your green tea It deactivates those pesky enzymes, ensuring that the herbaceous and botanical flavors hidden inside remain intact. Next comes the twisting or pressing to get that unique green tea flavor we all crave – whether by hand or machine – the important thing is that you get a low moisture content (4-7%) after that, so that your brew retains its flavor longer when infused in water.

How black tea is made?

Long oxidation and careful withering makes black tea the boldest choice for any connoisseur! The leaves used to make this classic beverage vary – from older plant parts, all the way down to young sprouts. As these leaves begin their journey towards becoming your favorite brew, they lose 30-40% of moisture during withering. 

How black tea is made

Get ready to step into the world of black tea! After undergoing a rapid withering process, our leaves take an exciting journey involving rolling and oxidizing before finally getting dried out at 110°C. The result? A delicious dark brew with robust flavor that’ll keep you coming back for more. Enjoy your cup today!

This process brings out notes in color, taste & aroma that gives each batch its own unique character. It’s no wonder why it continues to be a beloved treat around kitchen tables everywhere!

After the oxidation process, black tea is sorted into two types of processing. The orthodox method carefully sorts leaves by size to create premium loose leaf blends while CTC quickly turns out teabags on an industrial scale from lower quality “dust” leftovers. So if you fancy a cup of rich and aromatic tea brewed with whole ingredients, reach for that special bag of premium grade stuff!

Pu-erh or Heicha: production features and secrets from the experts

Did you know that 1,000 years ago people were pressing tea into cakes to transport long distances? That’s where heicha or dark teas come from! You may recognize one of the most famous members of this group – puerh. To be called a Puerh all post-fermented tea has to originate in Yunnan Province with Da Ye Big Leaf cultivars and nowhere else! 

Today these special brews have remained highly sought after by both collectors and casual drinkers alike. So why not enjoy some history alongside your next cup o’ Puerh?

Pu erh or Heicha how tea is made

Did you know that the unique microclimate of southern Yunnan, with its lush forests and humid environs, provides a wealth of funghi and yeast for tea-cake fermentation? That’s right – depending on how it is processed afterwards, puerh can either be classified as raw or ripe.

Raw versions will have more subtle tones because they’ve been left to ferment naturally in cool dampness; whereas riper varieties are darker in color due to an accelerated maturing process.

Lovers of loose leaf tea know that when it comes to Puerh, the wait is worth it. After all, this unique type of post-fermented black or green Chinese tea needs a few years in order for its mellowing phase to take place and its delicious flavours emerge. From withering under shaded sunlight and tumbling in hot machines through rolling by hand – every step taken during production perfectly prepares each leaf before they are dried beneath the sun’s rays; culminating into two beautiful categories with vastly different tastes!

Crafting raw puerh tea is a precise art. Each step must be carefully executed in order to achieve the perfect balance of oxidation and fermentation – from sun drying and panfiring, maintaining enzymes for optimal oxidisation over time, all the way through its “wet-piling” aging process which creates an intense flavour profile akin to coffee!


Raise your cup in celebration! For hundreds of years, people from all over the world have perfected tea production, a variety of exotic tea flavors just waiting to be discovered. Whether you prefer black tea or white, leaf or bagged, each cup is filled with unique notes that give each brew its own character. So take a moment and enjoy each sip – thousands of subtle nuances await you!

Helena Tasty

Leave a Comment