Tea brands matter if you are a tea lover, and everyone has their favorites. Brewing an amazing cup of tea means having the right balance of flavor and strength. Some teas even offer some health benefits, making it a must-drink beverage for many.
Tea Brands: Choosing the Right One for You
With so many tea brands on the market, it’s not easy to choose one that meets your needs. There are few ways to narrow the list to a few top options that you can test at your leisure.
- Start with the flavor options to find a catalog that works with your tastes.
- If you don’t have a way to use loose leaf tea, then you might want to narrow the list to those companies offering tea bags.
- Price may be a consideration if you’re working with a budget.
Accessibility is also an important factor for many tea lovers. Sometimes tea crops don’t fare as well and there’s a subsequent tea shortage that could impact your favorite brand or flavor.
Tea and Your Health
A good cup of tea is soothing, but the right tea can have notable health benefits.
For example, green tea is loaded with antioxidants that have several health benefits, including anti-inflammatory properties. It can support healthy blood sugar levels, aid in exercise recovery and weight loss, and may increase alertness. If you struggle to drink plain green tea, it helps to add a little raw honey.
Chamomile tea is known for reducing stress and supporting sleep, but it can also help your digestive system. Peppermint, ginger, and lemon teas can also help with digestion and settle an upset stomach.
Whether you need a hot cup of tea to settle down at night or an ice cold tea as an afternoon pickup, you’re sure to find what you need with one of these top tea brands.
Bigelow Tea Company
Bigelow is one of the most iconic American tea brands. Interior designer Ruth Bigelow invented it in her New York City kitchen. She named her first type of tea “Constant Comment”, which is still one of the brand’s most popular flavors today.
Constant Comment is a black tea with hints of orange rind and sweet spices. Bigelow wanted to create a tea concentrated enough to be used in small amounts while retaining flavor.
The original tea was heralded for its unusual flavor that has now become ubiquitous. Bigelow now has over 120 flavors with all different bases including black, white, and green.
Mighty Leaf Tea
Husband and wife Gary Shinner and Jill Portman founded Mighty Leaf Tea Company in 1966. Their main goal was to make the perfect black tea, and by all accounts, they succeeded.
Peet’s Coffee acquired Mighty Leaf in 2014 and significantly increased its distribution. They still sell boxes of loose-leaf and tea bags in grocery stores, as well as at all Peet’s Coffee locations in hot and iced forms.
They have a wide variety of creative flavors, and their spiced fruit ones are especially popular. For real tea fanatics, they also have a subscription service with monthly deliveries.
Republic of Tea
The Republic of Tea is easily recognizable for its iconic cylindrical containers and simply designed bags. It was founded in California in 1992 and was one of the first major tea companies in the United States to offer Asian varieties like rooibos red and white teas.
Republic of Tea’s goal is to encourage a “sip by sip” rather than “gulp by gulp” culture where people spend time mindfully enjoying the practice of tea drinking. This is also based on East Asian tea-drinking traditions.
Republic has over 350 unique varieties of tea, many of which mix multiple fruits with spices. Their white teas specifically have some of the most delicious and complex flavor profiles.
Yogi Tea is aptly named, taking inspiration from the healing effects of yoga and its creator. Kundalini yoga guru and spiritual teacher Yogi Bhajan started the company in 1984 in Eugene, Oregon.
Bhajan moved to the United States from India in the 1980s to spread the power of yoga abroad, and this tea company was part of his mission. He founded the company in the spirit of Ayurveda, an Indian holistic healing philosophy.
As well as being delicious, Yogi teas also strive to put wellness in every sip. Each flavor combines ingredients to support things like gut health, sleep hygiene, and immune support.
Perhaps no tea brand is more classic than the British brand Twinings, with over 300 years of history. Thomas Twining started Britain’s first ever tea room in London in 1706. The tea room still operates today, and the brand has the oldest continuously used logo in the world.
Twinings has maintained a stellar reputation and taste for its entire existence. This is thanks to its careful ingredient sourcing and commitment to the brand’s integrity. It is a founding member of the Ethical Tea Partnership that aims to improve sustainability in the tea industry.
Twinings started with only simple flavors but has expanded over the years to include many flavors. However, they are still best-known for their classic Earl Gray flavored with bergamot.
Celestial Seasonings is a tea brand founded over 50 years ago that specializes in herbal tea blends, otherwise known as tisanes. A group of friends in Boulder, Colorado collected local herbs in the mountains and founded the company.
Celestial Seasonings now sells black and green teas but is known for its herbal blends. They invented the popular Sleepytime and Red Zinger blends which have been imitated by many other brands.
Celestial Seasonings has expanded its creative blends, especially around holiday themes. Some favorites include Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride and Country Peach Passion.
Art of Tea
Many of the tea brands on our list are affordable enough for any tea-lover. The Art of Tea is more luxurious but worth it for a splurge. This brand specializes in loose-leaf teas and is both classy and delicious. You can taste the difference in quality with these blends.
These simple yet sophisticated cylindrical tea canisters make a perfect gift for the tea-lover in your life. They’re also ideal for a self-care day when you want to sit down and enjoy a drink. Bring out your favorite china for this.
Each of Art of Tea’s blends is hand blended, and the ingredients are picked ethically and sustainably. Their teas are entirely organic and sourced from the top 2% of teas worldwide.
If tea brands were cars, TWG would be Bentley. This Singaporean teahouse chain and brand markets itself as “the finest teas of the world”, and they aren’t wrong.
TWG’s co-founder and CEO, Taha Bou Qdib, is a French Moroccan tea sommelier. This title is usually reserved for wine experts, and it often takes decades to earn the accolade.
Bou Qdib personally travels the world to sample the best teas and to partake in multicultural tea ceremonies. These teas cost a pretty penny, but those serious about good tea won’t find better.
If you love tea, this is the perfect splurge when you want something special. Their gorgeous packaging and 100% cotton tea bags make these sleek boxes perfect gifts.
Harney & Sons
New York-based Harney & Sons has been producing fine loose-leaf and herbal teas since 1983. As its name suggests, it was founded by John Harney and his sons and is still run by his son, Mike Harney.
Harney & Sons specializes in sustainably produced organic and certified Kosher teas. They are popular retail teas and are the go-to tea brand for places like the Barnes & Noble cafe, and Four Seasons Hotels.
Apart from selling great teas, the Harneys also want to spread the love of tea worldwide. Mike Harney authored the book The Harney and Sons Guide to Tea, which was nominated for a James Beard Foundation book award in 2009.
Stash Tea Company
Stash Tea Company was founded 50 years ago in Portland, Oregon with the mission of being sustainable and delicious. They specialize in peppermint tea, using only mint leaves that grow in the Pacific Northwest, considered the best mint leaves in the world.
Stash is also a Certified B Corporation committed to environmental sustainability, excellent working conditions, and employee compensation. This is an ethical company we can get behind!
Stash sells loose-leaf tea as well as tea bags. They have also perfected the art of iced tea bags, a tricky process that often does not work. Cold-brew iced tea is finicky, and many brands’ tea bags are not suitable for this use, but Stash has cracked the code.
Fortnum & Mason
Fortnum & Mason is a British department store established in 1707. Department stores are struggling in the days of online ordering, but Fortnum & Mason’s five luxury locations have been frequented by the rich and famous for over 300 years.
While it’s known for its luxury goods and clothes, the company was founded as a grocery store to supply the highest quality foods and drinks to Britain. They still carry this reputation today, especially with their specialty tea brand.
Fortnum & Mason is the go-to for classic and refined British tea. Each store has a classic tea room that serves high afternoon tea with its delectable flavor varieties. They also sell their teas online and in other retailers.
Tazo is another Portland, Oregon tea brand that produces delicious products while also working for sustainability. They take this mission very seriously with various climate and social justice initiatives.
Tazo has partnered with American Forests to create Tazo Tree Corps, which plants trees in five historically BIPOC cities in the USA to foster racial equality and environmental projects.
Apart from being sustainable and ethical, Tazo also has delicious tea. They specialize in creative tea varieties that incorporate local flora such as their Pink Rose and Berry Hibiscus varieties.
While Pure Leaf is not a typical tea brand, they complete our list as the best iced teas on the market. Pure Leaf is an iced tea-only brand available in most grocery stores and many cafes.
While there are many other iced tea brands, Pure Leaf is the best in quality and taste by far. They contain no artificial colors or flavors and have a strong, but not bitter, flavor.
Pure Leaf’s most popular flavor is their classic black unsweetened iced tea. No other bottled iced tea compares in terms of flavor, and their sweetened and fruit varieties are also excellent.
Does green tea have caffeine?
All true tea, camellia sinensis, has caffeine. As green tea is the same plant as black and white tea, it has caffeine.
What is hibiscus tea good for?
Not only does hibiscus taste wonderful, it has antioxidants, lowers inflammation, and may improve health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol.
Does green tea stain your teeth?
Tea is heavy in tannins, and tannins stain teeth, so yes.
Which has more caffeine: tea or coffee?
Coffee contains much more caffeine than tea. One cup of tea has anywhere from 30 to 50 mg while the same amount of coffee has 80 to 100 mg.
How long does tea last?
In an airtight container, you can keep tea for up to a year. In the box it came in, teas will stay fresh for a few months.
Is tea acidic?
Yes, tea is slightly acidic.
What is kratom tea good for?
Kratom tea is used as a folk remedy for different ailments, from diarrhea to diabetes.
If you love tea, you need to branch out and try new brands. You never know when you’ll stumble across a new favorite cup, or a blend that speaks to you in a way no other blend does. While there are many tea brands available, the above are some of the best you can find at most grocery stores.
Experiment and drink to your health!