Buy Online Tea from Chah
When you buy tea from Chah you can rest assured that your tea is of the highest quality, it has been correctly stored and is the freshest available. We promise to dispatch your tea to you as quickly as possible and are happy to help you out if there are any problems. We source our tea directly from tea farmers around the world to ensure that it is the highest quality and freshness available. We only charge packing and shipping at cost and so offer some of the cheapest delivered tea available online. This is why we have 1000s of happy customers and we hope that you too will join them. If you have any questions, you can call us between 9 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., Monday to Saturday, or alternatively come and join us for a quick cuppa at our Leamington Spa based tea bar.
Buy Green Tea
There is a lot of choice when it comes to buying green tea and it’s hard to know where to start. We discuss this issue in more depth in the green tea section and point to the differences between Japanese green tea and Chinese Green tea. Tea it is said is a lot like fine wine, you basically get what you pay for and you can spend as much as you want to. However, unlike with wine, we don’t feel that you have to have a connoisseur’s palate to appreciate fine teas. Even a first time drinker will appreciate that higher quality greens are much less bitter and easier to drink (even if they are brewed badly).
Our most popular teas in this section are:
- Dragon Well - A great, easy to drink green tea that is often referred to as the national drink of China. This is our most highly recommended tea in this section and we feel that it is a perfect place to start.
- Jasmine Peals- A fantastic jasmine tea that is beautifully fragrant and mellow. This is similar to the kind of tea you might expect to find in a Chinese restaurant, although much higher quality.
We can’t speak highly enough about Liu An Gua Pian or Bi Lo Chun but perhaps we’re a little Chinese-centric. If you love grassy notes try bancha or sencha. If you are looking for tea to complement any savoury dish perhaps try our genmaicha.
Buy Oolong Tea
Oolong tea, also known as wu-long tea, wulong and sometimes blue tea, has the widest variety of any type of tea. Oolong tea is basically any tea with an oxidisation level that’s between green and black tea (8% and 84%). As a result of this the Taiwanese have separated these teas further into subcategories (you can read more about this in our section on oolong teas). Oolong teas are popular with first time drinkers, connoisseurs and us. At Chah we love oolong teas because they don’t have any of the vegetal or grassy notes (personal preference) that you sometimes find in green teas. Our most popular wulong tea is:
- Tie Guan Yin - A tea that is nearer a green than a black, it’s easy to drink, smooth, delicious and offers great value.
Chah’s directors have their own personal favourites. Stephen recommends milk oolong; a smooth drinking naturally sweet oolong tea that has a warming milky smell to it. Antony swears by Four Seasons Oolong, a medium-oxidised oolong that has more body than the Tie Guan Yin and improves in flavour with each infusion.
Buy White Tea
This can cause confusion. Although the term “white tea” may refer to a normal, milky cuppa, when in the context of premium teas and leaf varieties, the term white tea most usually refers to a category of tea. White teas have been growing in popularity in recent years. They have more antioxidants that other teas and are really low in caffeine. White teas are naturally mellow and sweet and we recommend all our white teas and encourage you to try them too.
Teapots, Infusers and Tea Accessories
With the great selection of tea infusers available, it can be difficult choosing the infuser that is right for you and right for your tea leaves. Chah alone offers fifteen different kinds of infusers and teapots. These include cast iron tea pots, glass tea pots, ball infusers, tea swizzle and mug infusers. As a result of the selection on offer, many people try a few different types before settling on the infuser that is right for them. At Chah we’ve played around and tried infusing teas with many different kinds of infusers and we’d like to share our experience with you. Here are some key pointers and things to consider when selecting your next tea infuser…
Firstly, think about the type of leaves. The most common form of black tea is made up from small, almost powdered leaves that will brew in pretty much any kind of infuser, even a tea bag! Black tea leaves are typically small and so do not need as much room to expand as an oolong or green tea leaf. If you wish to infuse a black tea with small leaves you should insure that the infuser you choose has a tight mesh and won’t allow the leaves to escape into your tea. Chah’s ball infuser is unsuitable for such leaves as leaves may escape from the small crack where the two parts of the ball infuser clamp together, Chah’s tea swizzle on the other hand is perfect for such leaves. Some green teas, oolong and white teas, have larger leaves and so when you infuse these leaves it is important to choose and infuser that will give the leaves room to fully expand and release all of their flavour. Infusers such as the tea swizzle are small, will not provide larger leaf teas room to expand and are thus unsuitable for larger leaf teas. Chah’s Chatsford mug infuser is ideal for large leaf teas as it provides a large open area for the leaves to fully expand.
Tea Health Benefits
Ever since people started drinking tea 4,700 years ago in China, they have been proclaiming its health benefits. Recently, there have been many positive media reports about the affect of various teas on health. There are seemingly new scientific reports about what tea can do for you being published every day. More and more people are drinking tea for the wide range of health benefits that have been linked to it. These health benefits mainly focus around antioxidant tea polyphenols, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) found in green tea, as well as amino acid L-theanine and cachins that are found in all teas to varying degrees. These compounds have either been linked to or been proven to boost mental alertness, fight cancer, have an antibiotic effect, boost immune systems, decrease your chance of cognitive impairment in later life, lower stress hormone levels, reduce the affects of inflammatory bowel disease, inhibit the growth of bacteria that cause bad breath, limit iron overload disorders, fight bacterial infections, reduce stroke risk, improve cardiovascular health, have antidepressant properties, reduce cholesterol and help weigh loss. As you can appreciate, there are simply too many subjects for one tea company to cover and we strongly urge you to do more, independent research if you are looking to maximise the potential health benefits of tea. One tip which is very much proven is that adding milk to tea may prevent you getting the most from these health benefits, as casein from milk binds to the molecules in tea that cause the arteries to relax and can prevent absorption.
Why Buy Leaf Tea?
Tea bags were invented for convenience and allow you to make a quick cuppa easily and mess free. Space in a tea bag is limited and tea leaves cannot fully expand to give their best flavour, so teabags are usually filled with broken up bits of tea leaves known as fannings. Fannings are essentially the next step up from "dust" (the leftovers found at the bottom of the bag). Fannings are often stale, contain dust mites and are a low grade of tea. This tea is usually machine processed, resulting in bitter, astringent tea (that’s why if you’ve tried green tea from a teabag before it might have tasted a little bitter). Companies like PG Tips and Lipton make millions of teabags and their main aim is to get a consistent flavour and when you are dealing in those sorts of numbers, it’s very difficult and quality will be sacrificed along the way.
In a nutshell, loose leaf tea is generally a much higher quality and can cover a much wider range. A main reason for people not using it is because they think it’s messy, but now with the selection of infusers that are available there is really no excuse.