Twinings Glossary


A desirable quality suggesting pungency, particularly applied to Assam teas.


Harshness would normally be due to under withering or oxidization in the manufacturing process rather than the timing of plucking.


Heavy describes a liquor which is thick, coloured, strong and dull. This is generally undesirable.


A tea that has remained in a dryer for a longer period than necessary, but not considered to be burnt.

High tea

A heavier version of afternoon tea, first developed as a grander, three-course meal. Whereas afternoon tea retained an aura of middle-class gentility, high tea became 'tea', the main cooked meal of the day for the working classes, eaten when the breadwinner returned from work.

Hogarth, William (1697-1764)

An influential British artist who trained as an engraver. His depiction of the effects of cheap gin, for instance, led to immediate legislation. Hogarth was a customer of Thomas Twining and, during his early career, found that he could not meet his bills. The solution was to paint a portrait in oils of Thomas Twining.

Horniman, John

The man who, in 1826, introduced pre-packaged tea. Horniman's presealed, lead-lined tea packets did not immediately find favour with grocers, so he sold his tea to pharmacists and apothecaries.


Describes the liquor of a tea which is lacking in cup quality.

Hyson, Young Hyson

A Chinese green tea named for the East India merchant who first sold it in England. Young Hyson is generally preferred to Hyson.