Assam Black Tea, what is it?
To most people, it’s an internationally adored tea that’s rich in flavor, abundant in health benefits, and now, the basis to popular Boba or Bubble Tea drinks. That’s correct, Assam black tea is found in many boba flavors that you come to love. You may only know it as black tea and that’s it, but there’s more to the story!
Let’s dive into what Assam Black Tea is shall we?
Assam Black Tea
Traditionally, black tea was a staple beverage (hot or cold) in Chinese culture for centuries. Black tea was in fact, labeled as a tea native to China. It wasn’t until when a variety of black tea was unearthed in Assam, India, did that finally change. Hence the name, Assam Black Tea.
It’s discovery during British colonial rule helped pave its popularity amongst other regions and countries outside of its founding territory. The British East India Company set up an exclusive cultivation and production of Assam Black Tea in 1839 which gained booming success within 30 years. This then led to the love of Assam Black Tea by British citizens.
Though Assam Black Tea has grown from its historical roots, the Assam tea shares its fame with other popular teas such as Darjeeling and Nilgiri that is also produced in India (crazy we know). Moreover, with its growing production, India now rivals China as the leading tea producer and is a vital part of the Indian economy.
Chinese Black Tea vs Assam Black Tea
So what’s the difference between Chinese black tea and Assam Black Tea? It’s literally just one word but it makes all the difference.
While Chinese black tea is produced by the Camellia sinensis var. sinensis variety, Assam Black Tea is produced by the Camellia sinensis var. assamica variety. (Are we getting too technical for a boba blog?) What does that mean to someone that doesn’t know the scientific name to plants?
It means that the Chinese black tea and Assam Black Tea come from the same genus of tea plant, they’re just not the same “species” if that makes any sense, it’s okay if it doesn’t! We’re all here to learn something new everyday right? Also, Assam Black Tea came way after the Boston Tea Party. Though regardless of what differences there are, we have indulged in Assam Black Tea and Chinese black tea and they’re both very delicious, especially for Hong Kong style milk tea or black milk tea. With boba pearls of course.
What does Assam Black Tea Taste like?
Assam Black Tea’s flavor is often known as malty and strong. What’s also great is that the tea itself blends well with other commonly used condiments such as sugar, creamer or milk, hence boba or bubble tea! Assam Black tea’s versatility in flavor allows people to habitually consume the tea in the morning, afternoon and night time! Not to mention, the tea itself is like a deep amber in color. It’s very satisfying when the aesthetic matches the content, especially with something that’s being consumed, kind of like how the aesthetic of @talkboba matches the boba addiction that our audience proudly boasts!
We as proud and happy tea consumers are becoming more aware of what’s in our food and drinks. Most importantly, what’s good for the human body. Thankfully, tea experts and health/fitness junkies have found some very beneficial properties of Assam Black Tea.
Health Benefits of Assam Black Tea
Just like many other popular teas around the world, there are huge benefits for drinking Assam black tea. According to some well known sources like Live Strong, the few benefits that were found in Assam black tea are: mental alertness, certain cancer prevention, cardiovascular health and a decreased risk of Parkinson’s disease. How wonderful is that?
The phenolic compounds in the tea have antioxidant properties which may help with reducing the risk of certain cancers, but not all. However, flavonoids in the tea line the inside of blood vessels which prevent plaque buildup within the arteries. This associates with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.
As far as Parkinson’s disease, black tea provides more protection according to some articles from popular sources like Live Strong. “Specifically, those who drank black tea almost daily (about 6 cups a week) were 71% less likely to develop Parkinson’s over the course of the 12-year study.”
Isn’t that quite amazing? With all these health benefits, who wouldn’t want to drink Assam Black Tea? Of course, drinking in moderation combined with light to moderate exercise daily is highly suggested. Because that too, is also best practices for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Anyone want to do 10 pushups right now? 😅
We hope you learned a little bit about why Assam black tea has become one of the most popular black teas around the world today. With it’s malty and delicious flavors it makes sense why so many boba cafes use this type of tea to create one of the classic boba flavors and may others!
Want to see what boba flavors include Assam black tea? Check boba flavors for all the recipes we’ve written so far, you’ll find some boba flavors with Assam black tea. If you want to keep reading our boba blog, maybe check out this one about 10 Asian snacks that should be created into a boba flavor. Our favorite is reminiscing about Pocky sticks!