Why do people buy premium teas? That’s a question closely related to this one: Why do tea vendors like me specialize in premium teas? It has to do with psychology, and no I’m not a psychologist, so this is going to be a layman’s view here.
|A truly premium green tea that we partner with JKteashop to bring to you.|
What Is a Premium Tea?
A lot of tea vendors call their teas “premium” and “hand-crafted” (see this great article by a friend) when they are just using those terms to attract you, the discriminating tea drinker. To us, a true premium tea is first of all truly hand-crafted and/or of the highest reputation based on overall quality (taste and aroma). Teas from people who really know how to grade the tea buds and leaves and then process them just right are truly premium.
Inconsistent Taste and Aroma Cherished
The premium tea drinker accepts and even cherishes inconsistency. They know that premium teas change from year to year vs. major tea brands (usually blends of various teas) like PG Tips, Lipton, Bigelow, etc., that focus on consistent flavor and make it a goal. Premium teas will vary depending on the location where grown, the weather conditions of that flush (time of growth and then harvest), how harvested (often hand-plucking done by knowledgeable workers), and (often most importantly) how processed (usually by a true tea master who has trained for many years and then been processing for many years). Exploring those variations is part of the joy of premium teas and what that discriminating tea drinker seeks.
Willing to Put in Time and Effort
Appreciating premium teas requires more effort, interest, and knowledge, and therefore more time. You could end up having premium tea enjoyment transcending the beverage and becoming a hobby or even a vocation. You will also find yourself zeroing in on certain tea types, tea gardens, and even those teas processed by specific tea masters. I have seen photos posted on social media sites of shelving where an enthusiast is storing his pu-erh collection or another devoted tea drinker is enjoying the latest tea from a specific garden. There are whole tea books devoted to this tea master or that. The interest is definitely strong!
Superior Quality Assured for the Price Charged
True premium teas have an assurance of quality. The vendor often knows his source, be it the tea grower, tea master processor, or even their representative. And the prices are almost always in line with that quality, besides calculating out to a very low cost per cup. A good example is a premium green tea that steeps out 5 or 6 great infusions and several good infusions from the same tea leaves in your gaiwan or teapot or even steeping glass. A cheaper version might only give you a couple of great infusions and 2 or 3 passable ones. If you like to squeeze every drop out of the teas you have, they should be those premium teas. And those devoted to such teas know this is a key factor in their purchasing decisions.
Are You a Premium Tea Drinker?
It’s okay to like whatever you like. There is no judgment intended here. But if you meet an criteria above, you can consider yourself a premium tea drinker. To you we say, “Cheers!”