OK, I did some more research into the 365 Things Every Tea Lover Should Know and have made a determination. Sources were not checked and lots of the facts are actually opinion. So here's my new plan: let's do this bigger and better!
What do I mean? Let's compile a list of at least 500 (if not more) TRUE tea facts. Eventually I'll publish in an ebook format with proceeds benefiting a charity or something of that nature.
You in? Want me to get things started? OK. Here are five true tea facts (and the sources). List yours below and every week or so I'll post them, with updates. Also, I will give you credit - so list your name/handle as well as the source for the fact.
Let's brew - I mean, do - this! :)
1. The phrase Chai Tea is something of a redundancy. Chai or Cha simply means "tea" in South Asia and other parts of the world. English speakers who refer to "chai" typically mean "masala chai," which is a popular spiced tea made from Indian spices and herbs. (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/chai, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chai_tea)
2. Darjeeling is not from China, even though 365 Things...claims it is. As reader Jackie pointed out, it's actually a tea from India. The black tea is named after Darjeeling, a Himalayan town in West Bengal, India. This typically black tea is also known as the "Cadillac of Teas," and is available in green and oolong varieties. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darjeeling_tea)
3. White tea, on the other hand, is almost exclusively produced in China, and is a lightly oxidized tea. "The name "white tea" derives from the fine silvery-white hairs on the unopened buds of the tea plant, which gives the plant a whitish appearance." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_tea)
4. Many literary geniuses and writers also happen to be fans of tea. There are many tea related quotes, poems, prose and phrases out there, such as this one from Rudyard Kipling, author of The Jungle Book:
5. There are also many proverbs that reference tea, as the enjoyment of tea spans centuries: