Category Definitions

Category: Flavored Black
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Black
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Fully oxidized leaf of any grade that is flavored using a flavoring agent or other botanicals.
Infusion: Well balanced, thought-out flavored black tea where the flavoring is not distracting and enhances the tea experience. Flavoring agent should not give off notes that are medicinal, chemical, perfumey or have notes of alcohol. When other botanicals are used, each should have a reason for being part of the flavored blend. Though the black tea taste may not be in the forefront; notes of the black tea should be present and detectable.
Category: Black Straight
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Black
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Fully oxidized leaf of any grade from one single origin that contains no other botanical.
Infusion: Infusion is golden brown to reddish brown to coppery in color. Medium to full body with mild astringency and an array of aromas and tastes.
Category: Flavored Green
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Green
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Green tea leaf (steamed or pan fired) of any grade that is flavored using a flavoring agent or other botanicals.
Infusion: Well balanced, thought-out flavored green tea where the flavoring is not distracting and enhances the tea experience. Flavoring agent should not give off notes that are medicinal, chemical, perfumey or have notes of alcohol. When other botanicals are used, each should have a reason for being part of the flavored blend. Though the green tea taste may not be in the forefront; notes of the green tea should be present and detectable.
Category: Green Straight
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Green
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Green tea leaf of any grade that is either first processed by steam to de-enzyme the leaf OR pan fired to de-enzyme the leaf. Leaf is often of varying sizes, styles and colors of green to yellow-green.
Infusion: If steamed: Infusion is medium-bodied with grassy and briny flavor notes. Tea should have some umami brothy character. If pan fired: Infusion is pale to golden-yellow in color with distinctive pan fired toasty notes.
Category: Flavored Oolong
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Oolong
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Semi-oxidized leaf of any grade or leaf style that is flavored using a flavoring agent or other botanicals.
Infusion: Well balanced, thought-out flavored oolong tea where the flavoring is not distracting and enhances the tea experience. Flavoring agent should not give off notes that are medicinal, chemical, perfumey or have notes of alcohol. When other botanicals are used, each should have a reason for being part of the flavored blend. Though the oolong tea taste may not be in the forefront; notes of the oolong tea should be present and detectable.
Category: Oolong Straight
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type:
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Semi-oxidized leaf of any grade or leaf style.
Infusion: If lightly oxidized: Clear green or golden color. Very aromatic with notes of fresh blooming flowers, pit fruits, nuts, and/or toasty characteristics. If heavily oxidized: deep golden yellow, amber or brown. Some particulate from final firing is acceptable, but should not be in excessive as to indicate a baked or aged tea. Very aromatic with notes of pit fruits, roasted grains, orchids, honey, chocolate and/or nuts. Smooth mouthfeel with deep and very lingering flavor and aroma.
Category: Flavored White
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: White
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: White tea of any grade that is flavored using a flavoring agent or other botanicals.
Infusion: Well balanced, thought-out flavored white tea where the flavoring is not distracting and enhances the tea experience. Flavoring agent should not give off notes that are medicinal, chemical, perfumey or have notes of alcohol. When other botanicals are used, each should have a reason for being part of the flavored blend. Though the white tea taste may not be in the forefront; notes of the white tea should be present and detectable. Particulate is acceptable from the hairs of the buds.
Category: White Straight
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: White
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Naturally oxidized leaf of any grade from one single origin that contains no other botanical. Processing method must follow classical styles. Leaves are not processed by firing or rolling, but by withered controls and gentle oven, cool drying and/or sun drying techniques, alone or in combination.
Infusion: Infusion is clear pale yellow in color. Particulates from the hairs of the unfurled leaf bud are acceptable. Velvety smooth sweet cup that is mild in flavor.
Category: Flavored Pu-erh/Dark
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Pu-erh/Dark
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Tea of any age or type that has undergone a secondary post manufacturing microbial fermentation step or aging process, whether aging is intentionally accelerated or not. Must be flavored using a flavoring agent or other botanicals.
Infusion: Well balanced, thought-out flavored pu-erh/dark tea where the flavoring is not distracting and enhances the tea experience. Flavoring agent should not give off notes that are medicinal, chemical, perfumey or have notes of alcohol. When other botanicals are used, each should have a reason for being part of the flavored blend. Though the pu-erh/dark tea taste may not be in the forefront; notes of the pu-erh/dark tea should be present and detectable.
Category: Pu-erh/Dark Straight
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Pu-erh/Dark
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Tea of any age or type that has undergone a secondary post manufacturing microbial fermentation step or aging process, whether aging is intentionally accelerated or not.
Infusion: Infusion is amber to rich dark brown in color. Medium to full bodied cup with notes that are earthy, woody, reminiscent of damp autumn leaves, molasses, and/or hints of spice. Little to no astringency.
Category: Flavored Herbal/Tisane
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Herbal/Tisane/Botanical
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Herbal/tisane leaf of any grade that is flavored using a flavoring agent or other botanicals. Blend cannot contain Camellia sinensis or Rooibos (green or red) or Honeybush. Blend must be caffeine free.
Infusion: Well balanced, thought-out flavored herbal/tisane where the flavoring is not distracting and enhances the tea experience. Flavoring agent should not give off notes that are medicinal, chemical, perfumey or have notes of alcohol. When other botanicals are used, each should have a reason for being part of the flavored blend.
Category: Herbal/Tisane Straight
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Herbal/Tisane/Botanical/Rooibos
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Herbal tea or tisane using only a single botanical other than Camellia sinensis whether caffeine free or not. (e.g. Rooibos, Honeybush, Chamomile, Yerba Mate, Hibiscus, Tulsi, Mint, etc.)
Infusion: A wide range of infusion colors, aromas and taste. Because of this, this category will be judged on the merits of the individual botanical submitted. Each botanical will be judged on leaf manufacture, infusion, aroma and color expected from botanical submitted.
Category: Flavored Rooibos
Format: Small Batch Iced Tea
Tea Base Type: Rooibos/Honeybush
Country of Origin: Any
Leaf: Rooibos (green, red, or honeybush) of any grade that is flavored using a flavoring agent or other botanicals.
Infusion: Well balanced, thought-out flavored rooibos where the flavoring is not distracting and enhances the tea experience. Flavoring agent should not give off notes that are medicinal, chemical, perfumey or have notes of alcohol. When other botanicals are used, each should have a reason for being part of the flavored blend. Though the rooibos taste may not be in the forefront; notes of rooibos should be present and detectable.