A light green tea with the taste of spearmint and subtle rose flavour.
A light, floral tea, with rich juicy plum and a dash of star anise.
Rich Rooibus tea sweet orange flavour and hints of warming spice.
Light, delicate and intriguing loose leaf black tea with a subtle fragrant edge.
Our classic loose Earl Grey, a delicate tea with a twist of citrusy bergamot.
Our master blenders travel the world to find and create the perfect cup of loose leaf tea. From classic Earl Grey, made with tea leaves, to floral infusions and refreshing green teas, there is a loose leaf blend to suit every moment and everybody.
What is Loose Tea?
Let’s start with the classic tea bag. Every tea bag contains the dried leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant, which are cut, sliced and diced to form the inside of a tea bag. Loose leaf tea, however, is made of high-quality leaves that are hand-picked, rolled to help break down the leaves and encourage oxidation, and then dried to create a tea that comes from the whole of the tea leaf. Essentially, loose leaf tea is brewed loose and not in a tea bag, hence the name.
Why Do People Drink Loose Leaf Tea?
Because loose leaf tea uses the whole tea leaf and isn’t treated in the same way as the ‘fannings’ (dust) that is found in a tea bag, it tends to have a more robust and richer flavour. Think of loose leaf tea like fine wine, which has different notes and subtle differences that can be tasted, smelt, and even seen.
The other beauty of loose leaf tea is that it’s not a predetermined amount of tea, like that found in a tea bag. Loose leaf tea can be measured out to suit the drinker’s preferences. It is felt that by drinking the whole leaves you get a much smoother and deeper flavour of tea.
How is Loose Leaf Tea Made?
The process of making loose leaf tea is similar to making the tea that is found in teabags, but with a few differences. The creation of loose leaf tea involves a process that can vary depending on the tea type—whether it's black, green, white, oolong, or herbal. Here's an overview:
Plucking: The tea leaves are handpicked, typically from the top two leaves and a bud of the Camellia sinensis plant. This step ensures the quality of the leaves.
Withering: Freshly plucked tea leaves are spread out in a controlled environment to wither. This process reduces the moisture content and makes the leaves pliable.
Rolling: The withered leaves are then rolled to break down their cell structure. Rolling can be done by hand or by machinery. This step initiates the oxidation process, which is crucial for certain types of tea.
Oxidation: For loose leaf teas like black tea, the rolled leaves are spread out to react with oxygen, which triggers oxidation. The level of oxidation affects the final flavour and colour of the tea. Green and white teas are not oxidised or are minimally oxidised.
Firing or Drying: After achieving the desired oxidation level, the tea leaves are heat-treated to halt oxidation. This step also removes any remaining moisture from the leaves.
Sorting and Grading: The processed leaves are sorted based on size, quality, and characteristics. This sorting creates different grades of tea, from whole leaves to smaller particles that can then be used in tea bags.
What Types of Loose Leaf Tea Leaves Are There?
There are many types of loose leaf tea, each with its own unique qualities, flavours, and, as mentioned before, notes and nuances. Here are some of our delicate and beautiful loose leaf teas you can enjoy at home.
English breakfast Loose Tea - A light, golden and well-rounded tea with a lot of body and flavour
Earl Grey Loose tea: A classic loose Earl Grey with flavours of lemon and bergamot
Assam Loose Tea: solid Indian tea with a rich, malty character - perfect at any time of the day.
Blackcurrant & Lavender Loose Tea: A rich and fragrant blend of blackcurrant and lavender that tastes like autumn.
Grey Dragon Oolong Loose Tea: Elegant needles of refreshing aromatic oolong tea with a light and floral note.
2nd Flush Darjeeling Loose Leaf Tea: A light and elegant black tea grown in the Himalayas with a citrus finish.
How to Drink Loose Leaf Tea?
The way you drink loose tea leaves is all down to preference, but a few things will help you get the most from your cup of loose leaf tea. Here’s how to brew;
1. Boil Water: Heat fresh, filtered water to the perfect temperature for the type of tea you're brewing. Different teas require different temperatures (e.g., green tea typically needs cooler water than black tea).
2. Measure Tea: Not sure how much loose leaf per cup? Use 1-2 teaspoons per cup. Place the leaves for tea into your infuser or brewing vessel.
3. Infuse: Pour the hot water and let it steep for the recommended time. Steeping times vary depending on the type of tea—green tea might steep for 2-3 minutes, while black tea may steep for 3-5 minutes.
4. Strain or Remove: Once steeped, remove the infuser or strain the tea leaves from your teapot or mug to avoid over-steeping.
5. Enjoy: Pour the brewed tea into your cup and savour the aromatic and flavours of your loose leaf tea.
Why Choose Twinings' Loose LeafTea?
With over 300 years of tea blending behind us, you can count on Twinings loose leaf tea for the perfect cup, every time.
• Exceptional quality: Our Master Blenders rate hundreds of samples from all over the world every week to ensure we only buy the best tea leaves. We don't own any tea gardens either, so we're free to partner with the best producers around.
• Rich flavour varieties: Our range of loose leaf tea is full of diverse flavours and blends. From classic black teas to more unique and rare types of loose tea such as blackcurrant and lavender, Grey Dragon Oolong or Jasmine Jade Butterfly, you can be sure to find something to suit your taste or a new tea blend to try.
• Tea drinkers' choice: Twinings is a family favourite, so we're the top out-of-home tea choice. Elevate your everyday cup of tea with one of our loose teas today, and see why!
• Purveyors of Great Taste: In 2023, we were honoured to win prizes for 15 of our products at the Great Taste Awards – often referred to as the 'Oscars of the food and drink world'.
• Committed to care: All our teas are sourced with care, from looking after the environment they grow in to treating suppliers and pickers fairly. Learn more about our commitment to communities.
Shop our loose lea teas today and experience more. Got a question? Check our FAQs or contact us.