Premium whole leaf tea sets itself apart from bagged tea in 2 important ways.
If you cut open a paper tea bag, you will find dust. That’s what the industry calls the smallest particles in the sorting process. Dust is produced when pounds of whole leaf tea are processed. The damaged and dried pieces of leaves fall to the bottom of the netting or bag. This is scooped up and put into tea bags. Part of our evaluation of new teas is fresh looking leaves with a shine and a pleasant bouquet. This is indicative of a leaf that isn’t dried out, has much of its essential oils intact and will provide a great amount of flavor. That is usually absent in bagged tea.
Another benefit from whole leaf tea is re-steeping. Many teas such especially Oolong, Pu-erh and Jasmine Pearls are shaped in a way that offers flavors after several infusions. Utilizing a brewing basket will allow the leaves to expand and circulate in the hot water to get everything the leaves have to offer.
There’s no wrong way to enjoy tea and bagged tea does have its place especially regarding its convenience. If you want to experience the best possible cup, make sure your making it with whole leaf tea.