Sweet Leaf Tea Company
The Brand: Sweet Leaf was launched in 1998 in Beaumont, Texas. Its co-founder, Clayton Christopher, had a dream to brew a bottled tea that tasted just as good as homemade. The company started with a $10,000 loan and Christophers family recipe.
Need To Know: Today, Sweet Leaf is owned by Nestle Waters, who invested $15 million into the company in 2009. Sweet Leafs tea is sold in glass bottles, brewing flavors such as lemon, peach, mango, and pomegranate.
The Best Tea Brands In The World: Discover Your Perfect Infusion
The most luxurious tea brands.
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We love tea. There are few things more comforting than wrapping your hands around the warmth of a steaming cup of the best teas in the world, ready to put bone-china to your lips. In fact, the entire ritual is a blessing, from boiling the water to waiting patiently while your fragrant tea leaves or tea bags infuse. Then theres the aromatic steam rising, lush scents filling your olfactoriesand finally, the delicious flavors as they awaken your tastebuds.
Yes, what began in 3rd Century China has conquered the world, one sip at a time. At any given moment, people across Earth will be sitting down to a 5-minute tea break, sharing gossip with friends, or simply taking a moment to relax while they sip. From Indias spicy chai to Chinas rejuvenating Oolong tea to Britains hearty, fresh English Breakfast, people from all walks of life share a passion for this beloved brew in its many forms.
So, join us in exploring the worlds top tea brands whose raison dêtre is to bring you the finest teas. Weve curated the ultimate guide including everything from organic and luxe to budget-friendly, to the best loose-leaf tea brands through to complex herbal teas, and everything in between. Put the kettle on, will you?
How Is Black Tea Different From Normal Tea
Tea is a staple beverage in the east and west, and this is for a good reason. Research has revealed that drinking tea has a lot of physical and mental health benefits. It can boost your immunity, help prevent cancer and heart conditions, refresh your mood, and much more.
There are different types of teas available, but we will focus on the regular and black tea here. Black tea has a robust and stronger oxidized flavor. Both black and green teas are made by brewing the Camellia Sinensis plant. The leaves are then left to ferment to get that darker and richer flavor, and thats how black tea differs from green tea.
On the other hand, regular tea is actually black tea that undergoes the process of oxidation to extract antioxidants and mellow out the original flavor.
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An Herbal Tea Packed With Whole Flowers And Petals
Why: Every blend Ive tried from Leaves and Flowers has surprised me: Each tastes vibrant and complex and looks like the chicest, freshest potpourri. I particularly love making a cup of the Turmeric Wellness Blend as a nighttime ritual. I inhale the herbs and spices while the tea is still dry and watch the bits bloom and swirl as I pour water over it . This teawhich has rosemary, ginger, pepper, turmeric, and citrus peelis spicy, earthy, and a little tangy. It yields a deep orangey-gold liquid from the turmeric. Sometimes Ill add soy milk and honey to make it sweeter and a little more soothing. The fragrant, gorgeous teas from Leaves and Flowers make the tea process feel extra-special, and it helps that the packaging is really beautiful and well-thought-out. You can reseal the paper bags like a coffee bag, squeezing out the air and folding the top closed with built-in plastic tabs.
Anna Perling, staff writer
Other teas to try from Leaves and Flowers:Mintha, a verdant tea and just a touch sweet, like fresh mint picked from a garden
Teapigs Peppermint Leaves Tea Bags
Pricier than competitors
If peppermint tea sometimes doesn’t deliver on the icy, minty flavor you’re craving, look no further than this brand. Teapigs promises the mintiest mint of all time with these bags, and that’s exactly what you get. The company uses fresh, flavorful whole mint leaves in its bags, offering the fullness of flavor in convenient bag form. Teapigs is a reliably great brand for any tea or tea blend you might be looking for, but for lovers of mint tea, the peppermint variety is an absolute must.
Price at time of publish: $25
Ingredients: Peppermint | Origin: Unknown | Quantity: 50 bags | Compostable: Yes
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What Can I Do With Old Loose Tea Leaves
Cutting down on waste is something we could all do more of in our lives. If youre an avid tea drinker, then youve probably noticed your old loose tea leaves go to waste. If youre wondering if they have other purposes, the simple answer is yes. Youll find a few ideas below:
- Use to flavor food: Add old tea leaves to recipes for a subtle, earthy flavor or check out a recipe for pickled tea leaves
- Create a deodorizer for your home: Pack old tea leaves into a decorative glass bottle to absorb odors in your homeget creative with this one and add dried flower petals or fruit peels to create a custom scent
- Make into skincare: Because of its high level of antioxidants, tea is the perfect addition to your weekly skincare ritualtry it in DIY masks and scrubs as a healthy boost for your skin
- Turn it into compost or mulch: If youve truly run out of ideas for how to use your old tea leaves, dont throw them in the trash! Compost them or add them to plant soil to pump up nutrients
Chamomile Peppermint And Other Tisanes To Soothe And Uplift
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The Spruce Eats / Lecia Landis
Herbal teas offer versatility of flavor and usage in your beverage repertoire. Options are endless when you consider that you can blend multiple loose leaf options to concoct any flavor you’re craving, whether you prefer a dessert-like rooibos tea or fruity chamomile option. Herbal teas can also be lovely when infused in alcohol for a unique cocktail or used in non-alcoholic cocktail recipes. They’re also good at any time of day. Some people prefer them in the morning for a tasty boost, although they can serve as a warm beverage to sip and savor at the end of a long day.
From loose leaf options to trusty tea bags, here are the best herbal teas to enjoy.
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Frequently Asked Questions About The Best Teas
What is the highest quality tea in the world?
We firmly rate Vahdam as the highest-quality and best-rated tea brand in the world. Selling online-only, this tea brand passes its production savings onto their customers, providing top-quality tea for reasonable prices. Read our list of the best tea brands in the world for more inspiration.
What is the most luxurious tea brand?
TWG goes above and beyond with its tea blends. Each fine, aromatic blend is served in a hand-sewn, cotton teabag, making TWG as eco-friendly as it gets. Having carefully studied tea ceremonies across the world, founder Taha Bouqdib is a true expert.
Which brand of tea is best?
We cant speak highly enough of Vahdam. With a celebrity fanbase including Oprah, Mariah Carey, and Ellen DeGeneres, Vahdams organic teas grace the coffee tables of the rich and famous but come in at a surprisingly affordable price. Find the best tea for your lifestyle and budget on our list of the worlds best tea brands.
What is the most beneficial tea to drink?
Green tea is thought to be the most beneficial tea for our health. While black, white, matcha, and other blends have their benefits, green tea packs a real punch due to its antioxidant content, minimal processing, and brain-boosting properties.
Finger Lakes Tea Company
The Lins planted their first tea plants in the unlikely state of New York in 2012 after working together with the Cornell Cooperative Extension. Despite the harsher cold climate, the conditions around the Fingers Lake region are conducive to growing tea. They process all types of tea on their farm.
Location: New York
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Jinglong Tea Factory Pu
If youve never tried pu-erh tea before, youre in for a shock. This tea is actually fermented in bricks or discs for many years, giving it a very earthy aroma that you might find off-putting at first. However, the taste is divine, and the tea is known to help with digestive issues, too. In fact, the Chinese and the Taiwanese proudly sell pu-erh tea like fine wine in specialty shops. Older teas are displayed behind glass cases and can be very expensive. But, you can now enjoy this magical tea at home with the Jinglong Tea Factory Pu-erh Tea. Youll get several discs of tea in a bamboo tube. Simply break off a piece of the disc and brew it like a loose leaf tea. In total, this pack of tea makes 80 cups.
Which Types Of Tea Are Most Beneficial
The health-boosting compounds found in tea and caffeine can help prevent a fatty liver, support a healthy pancreas and thyroid, and ensure optimal functioning of your bioenergetics circuitcomprised of the liver, pancreas, and thyroid, Dr. Lam said.
Tea contains theobromine which can enhance blood flow, thereby helping your organs, including the liver, pancreas, and thyroid, to function more smoothly. The unique blend of four stimulants found in tea offers a number of health benefits.
To add to that, theophylline and theobromine promote heart health. Both of these organic compounds can be beneficial to your heart. Theophylline relaxes your airway muscles allowing you to breathe more effectively and stimulates the force and rate of your heartbeat. Theobromine enhances blood flow throughout the body and stimulates the heart, thereby reducing blood pressure and decreasing your risk of heart attack.
L-theanine is another important health-boosting compound in tea, according to Dr. Lam.L-theanine is a psychoactive amino acid that has an interesting effect on the brain. It enhances the production of alpha waves which has been linked to increased alertness and provides gentler stimulation in comparison to coffee.
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Kirkland Ito En Matcha Blend Japanese Green Tea
It’s hard to believe this highly lauded Ito En Matcha Japanese Green Tea is a collaboration with Kirkland and can be bought in bulk at Costco, but sometimes life hands us miracles, and who are we to refuse? Trust us, this earthy and delicious green tea is packed with authentic flavor and tastes great any time of day. It has a light caffeine kick that’ll get you out of the house and looking forward to the day to come. It also pairs well with your meals, especially if you’re cooking up an Asian recipe.
Heat up some hot water and dunk in one of the handy individual tea bags. These little potent doses of tea are filled with rich flavor so you can refill for seconds and sometimes even thirds. We just love a cost-effective tea that keeps giving all day long. And when you buy them in a Costco-sized box, you’ve got amazing green tea that’ll keep well and last you for several months.
How Much Caffeine Is In Tea
It’s not always easy to tell how much caffeine is in a cup of tea. Caffeine content varies depending on the type of teaeven two black teas can have disparate levels of caffeineand how the tea is prepared. Water temperature, steep time, and the amount of tea used all affect caffeine content. On average, an 8-ounce cup of black tea contains around 50 milligrams of caffeine, which is roughly half a cup of coffee. Some black teas have as high as 120 milligrams of caffeine, however. Oolong averages slightly less caffeine than black tea at 40 milligrams per cup. Green tea ranges from 12 to 75 milligrams, with an average of around 30 milligrams. Some white teas have caffeine levels up to 75 milligrams, but the majority are between 15 to 20 milligrams. Finally, herbal tea is naturally caffeine-free.
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Does Green Tea Contain Lead
In a 2006 study looking at more than 1200 samples of tea, nearly a quarter of the green tea samples exceeded safety levels for lead. In a 2013 study, this time looking at 30 common teas , 73% and 83% of teas brewed for 3 minutes and 15 minutes respectively contained levels of lead considered unsafe in pregnancy or while nursing an infant. Shockingly, the organic green teas contained significantly higher levels of lead compared to standard green tea when brewed for 15 minutes.
This isnt all that surprising. In China, leaded gasoline was only banned in 2000. Roadside dust is still contaminated with lead even two decades later. Certain fungicides and pesticides commonly used in China might also contribute to lead levels in tea, but coal burning and residual lead in soils seem to be the bigger contributors to lead in tea.
Happily, many in the tea industry have recognized the problem of heavy metal contamination and are taking steps to ensure safety. Some companies undertake their own stringent testing and third-party testing to ensure tea is lead-free.
After all, if youre drinking green tea for its health benefits, you dont want to be worrying that it might actually harm your health or, if youre pregnant, the health of your fetus. Indeed, the extremely low levels of lead allowable under Californias Proposition65 regulation are based on research showing accumulation in brain tissue and subsequent cognitive impairment in offspring.
Where To Buy Green Tea And Considerations Other Than Lead
Many of the best green tea options now come courtesy of Japan, where the export of green tea has increased dramatically in recent years. The same goes for Sri Lanka, with the 2013 study above finding the lowest levels of lead in both organic and standard green tea from Sri Lanka. Buying from Sri Lanka or Japan may also help you save money, given the significant price hikes seen with green tea from China after the Trump administration put tariffs on Chinese tea imports in 2019.
Now, some of you might be wondering if the earthquake and subsequent Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster could make Japanese green tea a bad choice too. Again, its a fair question, but the evidence suggests little to no chance that the countrys tea-growing regions would have been affected by radiation. In addition, the US Food and Drug Administration have put in place significant checks to ensure tea and other products are not contaminated with radiation.
One other consideration before I jump into my top picks for organic and lead-free tea microplastics. Thats right, many green tea bags release plastic particles into brewed tea. One recent study found that steeping a single plastic teabag at brewing temperature releases approximately 11.6 billion microplastics and 3.1 billion nanoplastics into a single cup of the beverage. Not only could these microplastics affect your health, they can also enter wastewater streams and affect aquatic life and bird life.
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Overview Of Tea Companies
Most of the growth and production of tea happens in India, Asia, and China. People in the US and Canada consume billions of cups of tea every year. Research shows that India ranks near the top of the list of tea-producing countries, roughly 11% of the tea. Studies show many tea companies in India are exposing people to pesticides by including residues in their tea. China also ranks highly on the list of countries that use large quantities of pesticides in herbal teas and foods.
Choice Organics Organic & Ethically Made Tea
Made from natural fibers, their tea bags are plastic-free and compostable, while their cartons are made from 100% recycled paperboard and are, in turn, recyclable.
A Certified B Corporation, Choice Organics is also USDA certified and a member of the Ethical Tea Partnership . Their decaffeinating process is natural and free of toxic chemicals. Discover organic early grey, green tea, peppermint, rooibos, and more. This organic tea can be purchased for around $12 a box.
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Finding The Best Loose Leaf Tea Brands
The aroma, taste, and experience of tea are enjoyed around the world. With over 3,000 different types of the beverage, its safe to say theres something for everyone. Here, well introduce you to the best loose leaf brands to help you get the most out of your favorite sip.
Some people choose tea because of the comfort it gives, its healing properties, or as part of their culture. No matter which group you fall into, theres no denying that the treasured beverage comes with a heap of both physical and emotional benefits.
Coming up, youll meet our top 10 picks for the best loose leaf tea brands to help you connect with your favorite drink, your family, and the world around you that much more.
Which Of The Best Tea Brands Offers The Most Variety
There are a few names on this best tea brands list that offer an abundance of teas, and launch new varieties each season. Harney & Sons and Republic of Tea both make over 300 tea blends and types, ranging from flavored to classic to wellness, and while DavidsTea offers just over 100, its variety is awesome.
When considering variety, we must take into account each brands selection. Though Harley & Sons certainly has a ton of types, its variation isnt as great as the other two.
DavidsTea offers an encompassing spectrum of classic tea types, as well as seasonal flavors, wellness blends, herbal mixes, organic, iced, and caffeine-free.
When comparing DavidsTea to Republic of Tea, the collections and variety are pretty close, but since the latter offers more teas, well have to give this one to them.
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