Tea Grading Terminology, Tea Tasters Vocabulary, Tea and Food Pairings
You are not logged in. Access is limited. Login or see membership information. • The Tea House Times

BACK TO TEA FACTS

 

GRADING TERMINOLOGY FOR TEA LEAVES

 

Grading Terminology

©2004 The Tea Companion: A Connoisseur's Guide by Jane Pettigrew, Running Press

Leaf grades are divided into the following categories:

 

Flowery Orange Pekoe (FOP)

This denotes tea made from the end bud and first leaf of each shoot.  FOP contains fine, tender young leaves rolled with the correct proportion of tip, the delicate end pieces of the buds, that guarantee quality.

 

Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe (GFOP)

This is FOP with "golden tips"--the very ends of the golden yellow buds.

 

Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe (TGFOP)

This is FOP with a large proportion of golden tips.

 

Finest Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe (FTGFOP)

This is exceptionally high quality FOP.

 

Special Finest Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe (SFTGFOP)

This is the very best FOP.

 

Orange Pekoe (OP)

This contains long, pointed leaves that are larger than in FOP and have been harvested when the end buds open into leaf.  OP seldom contains "tips."

 

Pekoe (P)

This consists of shorter; less fine leaves than OP.

Flowery Pekoe (FP)

The leaves for FP are rolled into balls.

 

Pekoe Souchong (PS)

This consists of shorter, coarser leaves than P.

 

Souchong (S)

Large leaves are rolled, lengthwise, producing coarse, ragged pieces.  The term is often used for China's smoked teas.

 

Broken leaf grades are divided into the following categories:

Golden Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe (GFBOP), Golden Broken Orange Pekoe (GBOP), Tippy Golden Broken Orange Pekoe (TGBOP), Tippy Golden Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe (TGFBOP), Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe (FBOP), Broken Orange Pekoe (BOP), Broken Pekoe (BP), Broken Pekoe Souchong (BPS).

 

Fannings/Fines (also referred to as Dusts)

Fannings are made up of the finest siftings and are useful in blends for tea bags which require a quick brew.  A number 1 is also added to broken leaf grades to denote the best quality.  Dusts and fannings are further categorized as:

Orange Fannings (OF), Broken Orange Pekoe Fannings (BOPF), Pekoe Fannings (PF), Broken Pekoe Fannings (BPF), Pekoe Dust (PD), Red Dust (RD), Fine Dust (FD), Golden Dust (GD), Super Red Dust (SRD), Super Fine Dust (SFD), Broken Mixed Fannings (BMF).

 

 

 

MORE TEA FACTS

CHARTS:

Tea Tasters Vocabulary opens to a new page

Tea and Food Pairings opens to a new page

 

Reprinted by permission from The Tea Companion: A Connoisseur's Guide by Jane Pettigrew, Running Press, $18.95 U.S.  ©2004   This is copyrighted property and may not be re-printed or used in any manner without proper authority from the publisher.  

 

BACK TO TEA FACTS


2003 - present