If you’re looking for where to buy the best tea online, you have come to the right place! In this article, we will be taking a look at the best sources for loose leaf tea online, broken down by category. We’ll first talk about the best place to find Japanese green tea online, and then later one we will discuss where to find Chinese tea, Taiwanese tea, Indian/sri lankan tea and we’ll even go through a few different options for herbal infusions as well. Without further ado, let’s get started!
So where to buy the best tea online? Here is our top 5 for each tea categories:
When it comes to where to buy the best tea online, there is no one answer because tea is such a broad category. We decided to break it down by tea variety to make it easier to find what you’re looking for.
The Best Japanese Tea Online
Of course, when it comes to buying tea, it is not about “brands” but rather individual producers. That is one of the reasons why we like to be transparent about the tea we sell, showing you the exact farm and farmer that produced it. These farmers do not sell their tea worldwide, so they rely on us to distribute the tea to customers in the U.S and Europe. We are proud to work with so many talented farmers, and if you’re interested in trying any of their teas, you can find them on our website. Let’s highlight a few of the farmers we work with.
Mr. Sakamoto specializes in the production of Gyokuro. Gyokuro is famous for this strong sweet and savory flavor that is unmatched in the world of tea.
It is rare to find a gyokuro farmer that grows the tea without the use of pesticides or chemicals, but Mr. Sakamoto has been doing it this way since 1985.
By creating his own fertilizer, he is able to create strong and healthy tea plants without harming the natural ecosystem.
Up in the mountains of Takachiho, Mr. Issin is hard at work crafting beautiful pan fired green teas like the kamairicha and kuki hojicha. He specializes in the roasted green teas, which take on warmer flavor profiles of coffee, caramel and chocolate. He likes to do things the old fashioned way, and the results speak for themselves. He lives on the tea farm with his family in their 200 year old home and he still produces hojicha and kamairicha using the pan-firing method. This method really brings a lot of flavors to the teas, and they are consistently among our most popular.
Mr. Henta lives in the area of Kirishima and he specializes in the production of sencha teas. He has become an expert on green tea varietals or “cultivars”. Each tea cultivar has a unique flavor to it, and Mr. Henta carefully blends them together to get the best aspects of each.
You can see this in his sencha henta, which contains 8 different tea cultivars and is a great combination of these sweet, savory, astringent, vegetal and grassy flavors a green tea is known for. He also has single cultivar blends like the sweet and syrupy Saemidori sencha, the smooth and fruity Okumidori sencha and the mild and starchy Asanoka sencha. Try these teas out and let us know which one is your favorite!
Top 5 Best Chinese Online Tea stores
#1 Yunnan Sourcing
If you are an experienced Chinese tea drinker, you have no doubt heard of Yunnan Sourcing. This is the one-stop shop for all things Chinese tea. Here you will find a heavy focus on Puerh teas, but there are also some great white teas, green teas and black teas available. Here you get great prices and a wide selection
Exulteation is a great one-stop shop for many different types of teas but you will find a lot of Chinese teas on here. My favorite are the Himalayan snow buds, a white tea with a distinct peach candy note to it. These teas are great if you are a beginner as the prices are affordable and the selection is vast.
White2tea is a great online source for the tea nerds among you. Here you will find a great selection on Raw Puerh cakes and loose leaf tea alike. The reason it is only #3 on our list is not because of the quality or pricing, but rather because you can only find puerh here. This is not a problem for a lot of tea drinkers but if you are just starting out in the world of tea and wanting to try a wide variety of tea types, you may want to begin your journey elsewhere.
#4 Mandala Tea
Mandala tea has some great teas and some very fair prices. I found this to be a good starting point into the world of Chinese teas when I was not so familiar with it. The owner is very knowledgeable and passionate, and I was able to have quite a few questions answered when I reached out on instagram. I definitely recommend checking them out!
#5 Wudong Tea
This is one of my personal sources for Chinese tea. The selection and prices are very good, but you need to know what you are looking for. If you are really a serious Chinese tea drinker and comfortable buying in bulk to save money, by all means check out this shop. During the lockdowns and holiday season, I waited 40 days to get my shipment from China. Totally worth it!
Top 5 Best Taiwanese Online Tea Stores
Eco Cha is a fantastic online tea company that focuses specifically on Taiwanese teas. The owner of the company lives in Taiwan and visits the tea farms in person to select the best teas. Here you will find mostly oolongs, but also some black teas and green teas. The prices are fair and the quality is incredible!
Bang Tea is another good distributor of premium Tawainese tea. I have tried a couple of these teas and the quality is spot on. You will find only oolong here and even though the quality is limited, you will find all the classics like Jade oolong, GABA Oolong, red oolong and milk oolong. Give these ones a try and let us know what you think!
#3 Beautiful Taiwan Tea co.
Beautiful Taiwan Tea co. is another company that sources oolong tea directly from the source. In addition to supplying the popular Taiwanese Oolong, they also offer green tea, white tea and black tea. We are always happy to find another tea company that takes the time to meet farmers directly.
Tea from Taiwan is a great example of a simple, no-nonsense tea buying experience. The quality is good and the prices are fair. You may need to have a little bit of tea knowledge to navigate the site properly, but I’m sure you can send them any questions you might have and they’d be happy to help.
#5 Taiwan Leaf Tea
Finally we have Taiwan Leaf Tea, a good source for rarified or premium Taiwanese teas. Here you will need to have a pretty good idea of what you’re looking for but if you have a basic knowledge of Taiwanese teas, you should be able to find great deals on good teas.
Top 5 Best Indian/Nepali Online Tea Stores
#1 Nepali Tea Traders
Nepali Tea Traders is a great source of affordable, quality nepali tea. Tea from Nepal is completely underrated as a category, and you will find some amazing teas at very low prices. This is a great tea shop for beginners because the prices are very reasonable and the selection is extensive.
#2 Nepal Tea Collective
Similar to Napali Tea Traders the Nepali Tea Collective offers a larger selection of all things Nepali tea. If you are a beginner and just want to try all sorts of different kinds, this is a good place to go.
#3 Gurkha Tea
Gurkha Tea is another good source of Nepali tea. Here you will find great quality and prices, and the website is also a good way to learn about the different types of nepali tea if you are unfamiliar.
What-cha company does not exclusively sell Indian tea, but they do have quite a few blends. The selection and pricing is good and the sourcing is done responsibly.
#5 Vahdam Teas
Vahdam Teas is a good distributor for Indian tea. If you are a beginner they have a broad selection and affordable prices.
Top 5 Best Herbal Tea and Infusion Stores
#1 Baikal Tea
Baikal Tea sources all their ingredients from Lake Baikal, the worlds largest lake. Around here they have access to all sorts of different herbs you may never have heard about. This is my go to source for herbal teas like chaga and peppermint.
#2 Cordyceps tea
It can be difficult to find cordycepts tea, but if you want to try it you can give this company a try. Cordyceps can be considered a natural stimulant but it does not contain caffeine. If you re interested in the health benefits of cordyceps, why not try it as a tea?
#3 Wara Guayusa
Wara Guayusa is a great distributor if you are interested in Guayusa tea. The sourcing is done directly just like we like and the quality and pricing is great. Guayusa is similar to yerba mate but it actually has more caffeine and it even has theanine just like with tea.
#4 Jing Tea
If you are looking for premium herbal infusions, Jing tea has some good selections and some fair prices. They offer their teas in both teabags and in loose leaf form, so it is a good place for beginners to start.
#5 Starwest botanicals
If you’re just looking for simple inexpensive ingredients to make your own herbal tea blends at home, you can give Starwest Botanicals a try. Their prices are affordable, they should have just about all you need and they ship from the US.
What to Look For When Buying Tea Online
Transparency is usually an indicator in quality. If we have one piece of advice for people that ask us where to buy the best tea online, it would be that the more information the better. Producers that are proud of their source and have nothing to hide about it should be more than happy to share that information. We like to tell every customer not only what region their tea comes from, but also the exact farm and farmer that produces it. This way, you have complete transparency when you are selecting your tea. You know exactly how the tea is produced and where it was produced, with no hidden secrets.
Benefits of preparing your own tea
If you are looking for where to buy the best tea online, chances are you are already familiar with the benefits of preparing your own tea at home. In case you need an additional reason, we thought we would make a quick list of all the reasons to prepare loose leaf tea at home.
The first reason to prepare your own loose leaf tea is that it is a good skill to build up. in addition to getting to drink the tea, you also get to participate in the ritual of preparing the tea, which can be just as rewarding. Making tea is a skill, or even a hobby, that you can get better at throughout the course of your life. Just like with any other skill, the more you put into it the more you will get out of it. It takes practice, but once you get good at preparing tea it will be the gift that keeps on giving!
You won’t need to rely on tea shops or coffee shops to make your tea, you can make your own at home and save money. Once you get the technique down, you will get to enjoy the other benefits on this list, anytime you want.
Preparing your own tea give you much more control over the flavor. Perhaps you prefer your tea a little bit sweeter or more bitter. By changing up the brewing parameters each time you make the tea, you can experiment with different flavor profiles. If you want to make the tea sweeter, you can try brewing it with cooler water. If you want the flavor to be richer and more complex, you can use more leaves and less water to brew the tea.
If you find that you actually like this bitter flavor in a green tea, you can use hotter water. You are the only one that truly knows what you like in a tea, and preparing it yourself is the only way to truly get it to your liking. Tea shops and coffee shops will prepare the tea the same way no matter who comes in. When you brew your own tea at home, it puts you back in the drivers seat!
Once you get good at preparing your own loose leaf tea, you will have access to so much more variety. If you are relying on grocery stores or coffee shops for your tea, you will only get a handful of options, and these will generally be the lower quality, mass produced ones. When you prepare your own loose leaf tea, you can get the tea directly from the farmers and if you follow the brewing instructions you get to experience the tea just as the farmer intended it to be experiences. This brings a closer connection between the tea drinker and the field the tea was produced on.
In addition to better variety, you also get better quality. When you don’t know how to brew your own tea, you are basically forced to drink tea from teabags. Teabags are made from much lower quality leaves and sometimes they are even made from the discarded leaves of the tea production process.The priority for teabags is convenience, not quality.
When you just take a few additional steps and stray away from the beaten part with loose leaf tea, you will unlike a whole spectrum of flavors that was previously unavailable. This can be such a rewarding experience and all that is required is you learn a few basic techniques and pick up some basic teaware.
If you want to get started on your loose leaf tea journey, you can get a free kyusu teapot when you sign up for our monthly tea club. With the monthly tea club, we will send you a new batch of premium loose leaf tea from somewhere around Japan. All these teas are organically grown and you get them at a 16% discount or higher with free shipping. With this offer, not only do you get to try some of the best green teas from all over Japan, but you also get all the proper tools in order to prepare them. Sign up today and cancel anytime.