Premium Teas

Published July 1, 2007. From Cook's Illustrated.

Supermarket teas have improved in quality; does it still make sense to buy premium teas?

Overview:

Premium teas are almost always picked by hand, sold loose, and mail-ordered, or purchased at specialty tea shops. We chose English breakfast blends from five high-end tea companies and tasted them plain against our winning supermarket teas, first plain and again with milk.

Our results? While the winners of our supermarket tea tasting performed respectably against their premium brethren, ranking in the middle of the pack, true tea lovers will find that more money and the effort required to search out these brands) do deliver “a better cuppa.”

Premium teas are almost always picked by hand, sold loose, and mail-ordered, or purchased at specialty tea shops. We chose English breakfast blends from five high-end tea companies and tasted them plain against our winning supermarket teas, first plain and again with milk.

Our results? While the winners of our supermarket tea tasting performed respectably against their premium brethren, ranking in the middle of the pack, true tea lovers will find that more money and the effort required to search out these brands) do deliver “a better cuppa.”

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