I was introduced to blooming tea via a Business Insider video while scrolling through Facebook. Amazed by how beautiful this tea is, I turned to the internet to find out more on what blooming tea is.
Known as blooming tea, flowering tea, or blooming flower tea, this tea consists of edible flowers and tea leaves. Blooming tea can comes in many designs and variations, making it the most beautiful and interesting tea of all times!
Blooming tea is made by bundling the bud of tea leaves (usually green tea leaves) around edible flowers before shaped into a round or oval tea ball.
When steeped in hot water, the flowering tea ball expands and unfold, revealing a beautiful flower design inside. As the tea brewing process mimics a blooming flower, it’s no surprise that the tea masters named it the blooming tea.
What is The Origin of Blooming Tea?
Although the Chinese have a long history of drinking tea, this beautiful artisan tea is a relatively modern creation. It is designed by Xue Tong Yun (薛彤云 ), a young lady from Fujian, China during the 1990s when tea sales were slow.
During the 1990s, rose tea or flower tea was popular among ladies in China. Although traditional tea sales suffered, it was easy to sell flower tea.
Noticing this trend, Xue Tong Yun set out creating a new tea product by including flowers in regular green tea. Although her goal was simply to increase tea sales, she did not settle down with just packing flower and tea leaves together.
Instead, she visioned a flower that blooms in a cup when hot water was poured over tea. This is the origin of blooming tea.
Little did she know, her strong vision will one day lead her to create a whole new category in the ancient tea industry. Today, the blooming tea sub-industry has an annual turnover of 200 million, creating countless jobs for tea farmers and tea masters in China.
Each Blooming Tea Ball Is Meticulously Hand Crafted
Blooming tea is designed mainly for its aesthetic “wow” factor. Tea drinkers are visually delighted by the tea ball that slowly blooms when steeped. It quickly gained popularity in the West during the early 2000s.
Each blooming tea ball is delicately hand-sewn by an experienced tea master.
First, they tie up premium tea leaf buds into a bundle using either silk or cotton threads.
Then, edible flowers are carefully tied to the tea leaves bundle. Care is taken to make sure that the flowers are fully hidden and wrapped by the tea buds. The flower will not bloom properly when steeped if this crucial step is not properly handled.
After that, the tea master will roll the tea bundle into a ball and wrap it using a cloth, giving it its iconic ball shape.
The rolled tea ball is then dried and unwrapped before being packaged and ready for sale.
Disclaimer: This picture is originally provided by 炎暑集茶叶专属店, a tea merchant from taobao.com
Steps are translated into English by mybloomingtea.com
The Art Of Balance Behind Each Flowering Tea Design
As mentioned earlier, blooming flower tea comes in a variety of designs. However, not all edible flowers can be included in the blooming tea. Rose, for instance, is not suitable as it forms white precipitation when steeped together with tea.
Besides the chemical reaction that affects the aesthetic of blooming tea, each flower type has different floating properties. It takes many rounds of experimentation, effort and patience to find the right floating balance for each flower combination.
If you refer to the picture below, a premium blooming tea requires its base to sit at the bottom of the glass container while the hidden flower blooms and floats to the top. This resembles how flowers bloom in nature.
If a blooming tea is not properly crafted, it may float to the top of the water, greatly affecting its stunning visual presentation.
What Is The Health Benefits Of Blooming Tea?
As blooming tea is made of the bud portion of regular tea leaves, it brings you all the health benefits of drinking tea.
Blooming tea that is made of green tea leaves is a rich source of antioxidants. This help reduces the free radicals in your body cells and may lower risks of certain diseases.
In addition, drinking tea can help with digestion, especially after a satisfying full meal. Green tea contains a substance that increases body metabolism to burn off excess fat. Therefore, many consider green tea as the best tea to drink for weight loss.
What’s the Best Way to Enjoy Your Blooming Flower Tea?
Step 1. Place a flowering tea ball to the bottom of a clear & transparent glass container.
Step 2. Pour in boiling hot water from your kettle to fill the glass.
Step 3. Wait for the tea ball to bloom into a beautiful surprise. Enjoy the visual presentation and strong flower aroma before tasting the beautiful blend of flower and tea.
If you’d like to see more tips on how to get the perfect brew, kindly refer to my detailed guide on how to brew the perfect blooming tea.
Where To Buy Blooming Tea?
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In addition, do let me know in the comments below if there is anything else that you’d like me to cover in this article.
 Profile of Xue Tong Yun, 薛彤云, the lady who invented blooming tea.