Kínai teafajták
osztályozása a fermentáció mértéke szerint

Teakult, a Terebess Online különlapja

A) FERMENTÁLT TEÁK, FERMENTED TEAS

So called "fermentation" in tea manufacture is natural process of chemical changes of some leaf compounds (mostly catechins, namely thanks to polyphenol oxidase ~ except of MICROBIAL FERMENTATION) according to desired particular flavor and color of final product. CATECHINS ('tannin' bodies) are important members of a large group of polyphenols - an organic substances occurred in fresh tea-leaves. Polyphenol oxidase is a tea-leaves' ENZYME (= complex protein substances produced by living cells) which together with atmospheric oxygen are brought into contact with catechins (when tea-leaves are rolled) and "enzymatic fermentation" takes place... forming yellow (theaflavins) and then red-brown (thearubigins) compounds giving peculiar flavor and color to fermented-tea extract (liquor)...
WHITEFEHÉR TEA, WHITE TEA (in Chinese: BAI-CHA / Japanese: haku-cha)
ENYHE FERMENTÁLÁS, SLIGHTLY "FERMENTED":
Leaves are withered (lain idle - outdoor or indoor) = softened, undergoing weak enzymatic oxidation: moisture in leaves decreases by evaporating and permeability of the cell-walls increases, allowing its content to interact (increasing content of desired aroma and other components) - and finally dried (= to stop all chemical activities and enable tea leaves storage)
Fermentation rate: 10-20%
Average water-extract color degree: 1 (lightest)
TYPICALLY PRODUCED in: China [e.g."Fu-jian BAI-HAO YIN-ZHEN"...]
 
YELLOWSÁRGA TEA, YELLOW TEA (C: HUANG-CHA / J: oo-cha) (inaccurately classified as 'GREEN')
ENYHE KÉSEI FERMENTÁLÁS, SLIGHTLY LATE-FERMENTED:
Fresh-tea-leaves enzymes are INACTIVATED by heating, and leaves are rolled (and parched) and put in small closed container where lying idle under stuffy-heating conditions (moist & heaped / gradually alternating with parching - as the case may be) - and finally dried
Fermentation rate: 20-30%
Average water-extract color degree: 2
TYPICALLY PRODUCED in: China [e.g."Hu-nan JUN-SHAN YIN-ZHEN"...]
 
BLUEKÉKES-ZÖLD TEA, BLUE-GREEN TEA (C: QING-CHA / J: sei cha \ inaccurately known as "OOLONG" / =J: uuroncha)
RÉSZLEGES FERMENTÁLÁS, PARTLY "FERMENTED":
Leaves are withered with some shaking ~undergoing weaker or deeper enzymatic oxidation (usu. mainly at the edges of leaves, slightly damaged by shaking-turn-over treatment)~ and then gradually heated and rolled (by turns) and finally dried
Fermentation rate: 15-30-70%
Average water-extract color degree: 3
TYPICALLY PRODUCED in: China [e.g."Fu-jian AN-XI TIE-GUAN-YIN"...]
REDVÖRÖS TEA, RED TEA (C: HONG-CHA / J: KOO-CHA) (=BLACK TEA in Western languages)
TELJES FERMENTÁLÁS, COMPLETELY "FERMENTED":
(can be processed to Compressed Tea)
Leaves are withered (= softened for following mechanical operations), rolled (as for ORTHODOX method) or processed by CTC (Crush-Tear-Curl) or ROTORVANE or LEGG-CUT methods... (for all methods: leaf-cells are broken up and its chemical components are mixed with enzymes.../ deep enzymatic oxidation of polyphenols is started), and lain idle to "incubate" in humid warm room - (oxidation is accelerated in entire leaf, since damaged and macerated by rolling or even more damaged by other processes) - and then dried
Fermentation rate: 80-90%
Average water-extract color degree: 4
TYPICALLY PRODUCED in: China [e.g."An-hui QI-MEN GONG-FU"...], India, Sri Lanka, JAPAN,...
DARKSÖTÉT TEA, DARK TEA (C: HEI-CHA / J: KOKU-CHA \ inaccurately known as "PU'ERH" / =J: Pu'aaru)
KÉSEI (MIKROBIOLÓGIAI) FERMENTÁLÁS, LATE-(MICROBICALY-)FERMENTED:
(often processed to COMPRESSED TEA: +damp-piled, pressed, dried)
[* Incl. subcategory of PICKLED TEAS (=J: TSUKEMONOCHA) = lactic-acid bacteria fermented]
Usually tea-enzymes are INACTIVATED by heating (=parching or steaming), and leaves are rolled, parched and sun-dried (parching & drying sometimes omitted) and then damp-and-piled (covered lain idle for number of days) =fermented by multiplied wild yeast, and finally dried. It can be 'mellowed' (aged - stored under certain conditions) for years to improve its quality ("round" taste).
Fermentation rate: 100%
Average water-extract color degree: 5 (darkest)
TYPICALLY PRODUCED in: China [e.g."Yun-nan PU-ER CHA"...], JAPAN [e.g."GO'ISHI CHA"]


B) NEM-FERMENTÁLT TEA, NON-FERMENTED TEAS

GREENZÖLD TEA, GREEN TEA (in Chinese: LÜ-CHA / Japanese: RYOKU-CHA or popularly known also as: O-Cha):
(can be processed ~steamed, pressed, dried~ to COMPRESSED TEA)
[Green color retained - leaves' chlorophyll is not broken down by enzymes activity. The aim of green-tea manufacture is to preserve good qualities of raw tea leaves, but to improve tea-flavor]
Tea enzymes are INACTIVATED by heating (sassei) - shorter or longer stir-steaming in rotating drum (or steaming through moving belt / or boiling - coarse teas) or parching (stirred in high-heated metal drum or pan) =leaf flexibility increase to facilitate following process of rolling (=kneaded to release leaf-juices + squeeze moisture content of leaves out to their surface , then remove by hot air... / and to make processed leaves uniform in shape) and gradually dried ( to enable tea leaves storage...), or in some special cases are dried without any rolling
Fermentation rate: 0% (infused leaves have green color only)
TYPICALLY PRODUCED in: China [e.g."Zhe-jiang XI-HU LONG-JING"...], JAPAN,...