Back in 1908 the way people drank tea changed dramatically with the creation and development of the tea bag. Did this creation, however, completely and utterly destroy everything good and enjoyable about tea? Let's discuss.
Before going into details I would like to define some terms as not to confuse anyone.
Tea Bag: a bag containing powdered/fragmented tea leaves.
Loose Leaf: whole tea leaves (not fragments or powdered).
Tea bag positives:
- Availability: tea bags can be bought at virtually every shop and supermarket.
- Convenience: absolutely no mess, no fuss.
- Cheap: fairly low prices in comparison to loose leaf tea.
Tea bag negatives:
- Lower quality: due to the leaf being broken down, the tea loses taste and some nutritional value. In addition, the broken down tea cannot be stored for long periods of time.
- Environmental Impact: over packaged and some bags are not biodegradable.
Loose Leaf Positives:
- Higher Quality: brewing whole leaves allows for a fuller and more complexed flavour to be achieved. High-quality leaves can also be reinfused multiple times and also stored longer than tea bags.
- More Control: you can choose how much tea you would actually like to brew, although one tea bag equates to one cup, with loose leaf you can make it to your desired strength easier.
Loose Leaf Negatives:
- Equipment: you need infusers, strainers, teapots, which could be a little fussy.
- More expensive: loose leaf teas are often cost more than bagged tea.
- Less availability: less commonly found in shops and supermarkets and so has to be sourced online or in specialist shops.
In my opinion, loose leaf tea is so much better than bagged tea. I do understand that it can take some time to brew and make a cup of tea, but I believe that is what makes it enjoyable, being hands on with the tea and actually seeing what you're about to drink is great. In addition to this, needing strainers, infusers, and teapots does sound like fuss but that only adds to the tea drinking experience.
If you're reading this and thinking "I want good quality tea but I don't have time to get the teapot out every time I want a cuppa", I have some good news! Some tea companies sell pyramid tea bags that contain whole leaves, so you can get your fill of tea the easy way!
So let's refer back to the question in hand...
Tea bags did not *completely* and utterly destroy everything good and enjoyable about tea, it made tea available to everyone and that's fabulous! If you enjoy your tea, whether that be a bag or loose then that is all the counts!
I'd love to know what you all think about the tea bag, has this post changed your opinion for the better or worse? Leave me a comment below!!
Hope you all have a damn good week!
The Damn Good Tea Blogger!