All tea comes from the “Camellia Sinensis” plant, however, geography, climate, soil conditions, altitude and how the tea is processed are all factors that contribute to the flavor profile and characteristics of tea. The level of oxidation of the harvested tea leaves will generalize tea into three basic categories – green tea, Oolong tea or black tea. But there is one more major difference in tea production that greatly affects the finished product.
Traditional manufacturing vs CTC (Crush, Tear Curl) tea manufacturing methods.
Generally, CTC manufactured tea steep stronger and has more of a tendency to be stronger and potentially more bitter. Full leave tea is usually higher quality and less likely to be bitter due to the care taken in harvesting and processing. It is more subtle and have multi-layered flavors than CTC teas because the leaves steep more slowly and remain fresh longer.