Ever wondered how Assam tea and black tea differ? If the thought has never crossed your mind, read my blog about Assam Tea versus Black tea and find out through 31 points.

I am a tea-lover, a Tea-blogger & at the same time, I run my own tea cafe in Kolkata city. A regular patron at my cafe asked me a question that gave me the idea to write this blog” Assam tea versus Black tea”. Read my 31 points of differences and find out yourself. 


Assam Tea Versus Black Tea-31 Comparable Aspects To Energize The Brain

As a tea lover has the thought about how one tea differs from the other ever crossed your mind? If not, read my comparison blogs about how one tea differs from the other. This blog shows us the contrasting natures of two popular teas Assam tea and Black tea. Now, for your ease, I have made a table below so you can get an idea about the points that would be discussed. 

CLASSIFICATION(oxidization level)
Assam Tea

The level depends on tea leaves

Black Tea

Highly oxidized tea

Assam Tea


Black Tea


Assam Tea

Assam region of India

Black Tea


Assam Tea

Camellia Sinensis var. Assamica

Black Tea

Camellia Sinensis

Assam Tea

Extreme climate

Black Tea

Heavy rainfall & high humidity

Assam Tea


Black Tea


Assam Tea


Black Tea


Assam Tea

20 mg approximately.

Black Tea

Calorie free

Assam Tea

Increased Heartbeat, restlessness, anemia

Black Tea

Can cause insomnia, frequent urination, vomiting

Assam Tea

Good for diabetics helps in weight-loss, improves gut functions

Black Tea

Controlled sugar level, good for oral health, rich in antioxidants

Assam Tea

With a drop of lemon and honey(no-milk variety)

Black Tea

Without milk or sugar

Assam Tea

Orthodox & CTC

Black Tea

Ceylon, Darjeeling, Nilgiri

Assam Tea

Makaibari, Teaswan, Lipton

Black Tea

Goodricke, Society, TajMahal

Assam Tea

60-112 mg

Black Tea

47 mg

Assam Tea

3-4 minutes

Black Tea

3-5 minutes

Assam Tea

The GI Tag

Black Tea

No such known mark

Assam Tea

Makes for the best-iced tea

Blends well with any tea

Black Tea

Acts as a base for tea

Assam Tea

Kenyan Tea

Nilgiri Tea

Black Tea

Turkish Tea

Ghazal Tea

Assam Tea

Karma Kettle


Green Hub

Black Tea

Mountain Rose Herb



Assam Tea


Black Tea


Assam Tea


Black Tea


Assam Tea

12 months from the date of manufacture

Black Tea

18-24 months  

Assam  Tea

4 flushes

Black Tea

4 flushes

Assam Tea

Assam Valley, India

Black Tea

India, Sri Lanka and Africa

Assam Tea

Not acidic

Black Tea


Assam  Tea


Black Tea


Assam Tea


Black Tea


Assam Tea


Frontier Co-op


Black Tea




Assam Tea


Black Tea


Bubble Tea


Black Tea


Assam Tea




Black Tea

Citrusy Salads


Spicy foods

The only thing left now is to take a closer look taking one point at a time. So, ready to know about each point individually?

1.  Assam Tea versus Black Tea: The Fascinating History

The teas have a rich history that makes a fascinating read and tells you about their glorious past. Let us learn about it. 

Assam tea was discovered by a Scottish adventurer, Robert Bruce who in the year 1823, noticed tea-like plants growing near Rangpur when he was in the area as part of a trading mission. The news spread fast and 1839 marked the birth of The Assam Tea Company.

Black Tea was discovered in China in the 17th century. The story can be traced to the times when the Jianxi army decided to enter the province of Fujian and set their camps near a tea factory. 

2. The Contrasting Taste Profile of The Two Teas Is Another Interesting Point That Sets Them Apart

Let us now consider how unique they are in terms of taste.

Assam tea is known for its malty taste that resembles Muscatel wine. This has earned it the name of “Champagne of Teas” and it can also be defined as having a floral smell with a hint of sweet and spicy notes that depends on the flush. 

Black tea is called “ Red Tea” in many Asian countries owing to its red color when brewed is known for the bitter taste that it acquires. Thus, many people prefer adding sugar, honey, or a few drops of lemon that help them in balancing the bitter taste of the tea. 

3. The Place of Origin Is Another Important Aspect Worth Considering When We Talk About The Differences

 Let us now trace the place that is known as the birth-place of the two teas.

Assam tea was born in the lush Brahmaputra valley of the Northeastern state of Assam, India. The region’s climatic conditions(something which we will be talking about in the succeeding point)is ideal for its growth.

Black tea can be traced to China and as early as the 17th century, Like any other tea the climatic conditions of China is the prime reason why the tea is found in abundance. 

 4. Assam Tea versus Black Tea: The Source 

Let us learn about the source from where the two teas are derived.

Assam tea is derived from the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant var. Assamica. It would also be apt to mention that Jorhat and Dibrugarh are the two major contributors to the total production of Assam tea. 

Black tea like any true tea is derived from the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant that is grown majorly in China and this has made the country The Largest Tea Growing Country in the World, with India in second place. 

5. The Climatic Conditions Is Another Feature That Cannot Be Missed When Comparing The Two Teas

Let us now get to know the favorable climatic conditions for the two teas.

Assam tea is grown at an elevation of 5500-7000 feet above sea level in the lush Brahmaputra valley of Assam. This has earned it the name of “ The Highest Elevated Tea”. Being at such a high altitude the region has an adverse climate and is often frequented by heavy rainfall, storm, and hail. Rainy seasons are hot and humid while winters are cool and dry. 

Black tea can be grown in both tropical and subtropical climatic regions. Also, heavy rainfall between 150cm – 250 cms during the growing season along with hot and humid weather. 

6. Considering The Usage of Milk In Assam Tea versus Black Tea

 Let us now move further and retrospect the usage of milk to make a typical serve.

Assam tea can be had as both milk and without milk options. Now, the fact that tea-connoisseurs will always tell you to drink tea without milk the choice should be yours. I love milk tea and use Assam tea a lot.

Black tea on the other hand is known to be drunk without milk and thus, I am not a fan of black tea. Being a high oxidized drink it tastes bitter and times when I drink it, I add honey & lemon drops that help me in cutting the bitter taste. 

7. Retrospecting Sugar Dependency Or Usage Of the Two Teas

Let us now learn if the two teas can be had with sugar.

Assam tea is a very giving drink and the addition of sugar won’t hamper the taste though, for a more pronounced flavor, I reckon replacing sugar with amazing substitutes like honey, jaggery, palm sugar, coconut sugar. 

Black tea on the other hand is a tea that is best consumed without sugar. However, some people prefer adding sugar to their tea as this helps them adding an element of sweetness to the otherwise bitter tea. 

8. How Assam & Black Tea Differ Based On The Nutritional Value

Let us consider the nutritional value of the two teas.

A typical serving of Assam tea(240 ml) without milk or sugar has 20 calories. Now, when milk or sugar is added the count automatically increases anywhere between 180-200 calories which is way in excess don’t you think? 

Thus, I suggest you opt for the skimmed milk or low fat versions and ditch white sugar completely. Assam tea tastes better without milk too and is the best way to enjoy it as per tea-experts.

Black tea on the other hand is known to be consumed without milk or sugar and thus, a typical serving(240 ml) is calorie-free. 

 9. Getting To Know The Side Effects of Assam Tea and Black Tea

Let us know the negative aspects both the tea offers.

Assam tea is known for causing insomnia when drunk in excess right before bed, dizziness, nausea, increased heartbeat as a result of excess caffeine. By the way, I have written a blog about 27 amazing reasons to love tea where I have mentioned some teas that are beneficial for insomnia. Do give it a read. 

Black tea on the other hand too is known for side-effects like increased blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, frequent heart-beat all as a result of the caffeine level. 

 10. The Meritorious Sides of Assam Tea and Black Tea

Let us now have a look at some advantages both teas offer.

Assam tea is known to prevent premature aging, is good for diabetics, helps in weight loss, increases mental health, is good for cholesterol and gut health, is beneficial for oral health, etc are some merits that the tea boosts of.

Black tea on the other hand is good for keeping blood sugar levels in control, prevents kidney stones, is good for teeth, increases alertness, and is rich in antioxidants.

11. Considering The Preferred Way To Drink The Two Teas

Let us now understand the ideal way to drink the tea.

In the case of Assam tea there is no ideal way though tea-experts will tell you that the taste is enhanced when drunk without milk and sugar. Makes for amazing Iced-tea.

Black tea without any doubt is preferred the world over without milk and sugar. On the whole black tea is known to be bitter and for a pleasant drinking experience, I suggest adding honey or any sweetening agent and adding a few drops of lemon. Now, this version, i.e., black tea with lemon is widely drunk in my city and I enjoy it too occasionally. 

12. Taking The Tea Types Assam & Black Tea Offers

Let us know the types both the teas have to offer.

Assam tea generally comes in two main types, CTC and Orthodox. They are further divided according to the type of leaves, Orthodox tea is of a higher quality and is specially designed for teabags. CTC(Crush, Tear, curl or cut, tear, curl) is only for black teas and other types like Oolong, Green, Yellow are not made using this method.

Since most tea leaves are oxidized black tea can be classified into many categories. Genmaicha tea, Darjeeling tea, Ceylon Tea, Scottish Breakfast, Earl Grey, Lapsang Souchong, Dian Hong Cha, and Yunnan Red are some black tea varieties.

13. Brands That Have Become Trusted Names With The Two Teas

Let us have a look at the brands that have earned trust for themselves when it comes to picking up either Assam or black tea.

Assam tea is sold under names like Makaibari Tea Estate(most prized tea), Teaswan, Lipton, Assamica Agro, Teabox, Single Origin, Typhoo, Golden Tips, Halmari tea, Twinings.

Black tea on the other hand too has some prestigious names like Tata Agni, Nargis Sultan, Chai and Mighty, Goodricke, Taj Mahal, Brooke Bond. 

14. Comparing The Two Teas on Caffeine Levels

Let us weigh them based on the caffeine level that the two tea offers.

A typical serve of Assam tea(240ml) has approximately 60-112mg caffeine. However, this depends upon the tea leaves, flush types and various other factors(oxidation is a major factor too).

Black tea on the other hand has 47-90 mg caffeine approximately in a 240 ml serving and depending on flush types, water used, tea leaves grades, level of oxidation, the brew time can increase the count drastically. 

15. Considering The Brewing Time of Assam and Black Tea

Let us now consider the time that is required to make a perfect cup.

Assam tea should not be brewed longer than 3-4 minutes. Over brewing will boil the tea leaves and make the liquid bitter. Hence, it is advisable not to over-brew the tea. If you want a stronger color always use filtered water and not cold water. 

Black tea will give you a strong flavor profile when brewed for 3-5 minutes. 

 16. How To Identify Assam Tea From Black Tea?

By now you know about the similarities and the dissimilarities between the two teas. Let us now consider how you can be sure about the two teas.

Assam tea apart from the already mentioned perks has been given the Geographical Indication(GI)tag. To know more about it read my blog about Assam tea versus Darjeeling Tea(Interlinking to be done).

Black tea on the other hand hasn’t been given any such privilege. 

17. The Unique Features That Gives Assam & Black Tea “A cut Above the Rest”

Let us get to know some amazing and never-heard before features about the two teas.

Assam tea is known for its rich malty taste with a mix of spice along with sweet and citrusy notes. It is high in caffeine as compared to any tea though it can be had as a milk tea too. Also, makes for an amazing Iced-tea. Now, its second flush makes it ideal to be had with milk and sugar. 

Black tea apart from the benefits and being high on caffeine has no such unique quality that it can be credited with. Well, black tea lovers still can rejoice in the fact that it forms the base of any tea on the planet unless of course, it is a herbal or a fruit tea.

18. Teas With Similar Taste Profile in Assam Tea versus Black Tea

Let us now consider a few tea brands that are quite similar to both the teas.

Assam tea blends well with Nilgiri, Kenyan, fruit teas, iced tea or any tea that has a malty flavor with a hint of spice, and sweet & citrus notes to complement it further.

On the other hand, Black tea goes well with Ceylon, Darjeeling, Turkish, Do Ghazal, or Ghazal tea(a Sri Lankan tea brand).  

19. Comparing Assam and Black Tea on The Organic Options So Offered

The word “organic” has taken the world by storm with the food and beverage industry being the leader. Thus, it is no wonder then that the tea industry too is gaming up and making their own organic tea brands. Let us know some such brands that both the tea offer.

Goodricke, Khaass, Karma Kettle Organic Tattva, Top QualiTea, Chang’s Organic Tea, Green Hills, Arihant Company, Makaibari Tea Estates are some reputed names when it comes to buying organic Assam tea.

 On the other hand brands like Goodricke Roasted, Lipton, Rishi Tea& Botanical, Himalayan Premium, Arbor, Numi, The Art of Tea, Mighty Leaf, Terra, Numi are pioneers in black tea.

20. Considering The Tea Assam & Black Can Be Blended With

Let us now get to know the tea that they can be blended with.

Assam tea known for its spicy, citrus and sweet notes blends well with any strong black tea, fruit teas, iced tea, Scottish breakfast, or any breakfast tea blends.

Black tea forms the base of any tea and is known for its strong, robust flavor, Thus, it can rightfully be said that the tea works with any tea. However, consider Darjeeling, Ceylon, Turkish or Kenyan tea for a more enriched taste. 

21. Comparing The Ideal Time For Both Assam and Black Tea

The time when a tea can be drunk is another reason for its popularity and an important aspect that is worth comparing. Let us get to know the best time when the two teas can be drunk.

Assam tea can be drunk anytime though the best time is in the morning. It is called breakfast tea too. Now, if someone asks me my ideal time, I just go by my mood as for me any time is tea time. 

Black tea on the other hand is best drunk 1-2 hours after meals. Owing to its high caffeine and bitter taste, it should never be drunk on an empty stomach and right before going to bed.

22. The Shelf Life of Assam & Black Tea Is An Important Attribute That Forms A Vital Comparing Point 

Every tea has a shelf life or best before date and should be used before they go bad. This is one important factor that we would be talking about in this point.

Assam tea will last for a good 12 months from the date of manufacture. That is a humbling aspect to know though many of you would say that it gets over much before that and I will not be surprised. In my house and cafe(which is quite obvious)tea gets over quite fast. 

Black tea on the other hand when stored properly will last for 18-24 months from the date of manufacture.

23. Getting to Know The Flush or The Cycle The Teas Can be Attributed To 

The flush or the cycle when tea is harvested is an important point of differentiating and another point that sets the two teas apart.

Assam tea like any tea is a 4 flush tea though the second flush is preferred more. Now, let me tell you again that the flush depends on the flavor you want from your tea.

Black tea is a strong flavor tea and thus, is not dependent on any flush type like many true teas. 

24. Taking The Beginner’s Guide To The Two Teas As Another Aspect to Contrast The two teas

As a beginner, you might be hesitant in choosing your blend. I have been there too and thus, thought of sharing my tricks when I am buying either black tea or Assam tea.

By now you are familiar with the taste of Assam tea and the harvesting months. Assam tea has a rich golden color with a strong malty flavor and this is what you should be looking for. Now, the golden color is a result of the second flush and this makes it unique from the rest. 

Black tea on the other hand can be distinguished by its dark brown leaves as a result of heavy oxidation and since it is a blend that is found in most tea varieties there is no buying guide like Assam tea. 

25. Comparing The Tea That Is High on Acidic or Is More Bitter

True teas on the whole are known for being bitter. Milk, sugar, and toppings alter the bitterness and also make tea drinkable. Let us learn the tea that has a bitter taste profile.

Assam tea can be sweet, spicy, and earthy. Also, it makes for a great iced tea without the addition of sugar. These are some attributes that speak for themselves. This makes it quite obvious that the tea is not bitter.

Black tea has a strong flavor and is also the most oxidized tea. The high level of withering and drying results in the tea’s bitter. Thus, many add sugar to help strike a balance of sweet and sour. So, one can say that black tea is the more acidic tea.

26. Getting To Know The Vegan-Friendly Options of The Two Teas

Let us now learn if black and Assam tea can be called vegan friendly.

Coconut milk, soy milk, hazelnut, hemp, flaxseed, oats are all pearly white options that can be used to make a perfect Assam tea.

On the other hand, black tea is best drunk without any milk and sugar. It is a befitting vegan drink. I suggest you skip sweetening it with honey as it is sourced from bees. 

27. Getting To Know The Gluten-Friendly Nature of Assam Tea and Black Tea

Let us now understand if the two teas can be called gluten-free.

 A typical serving of Assam tea consists of tea leaves as the base and water. Milk and sugar are optional. So, it can be said that the tea is gluten-free and can be enjoyed by all.

Black tea too isn’t far behind and is giving a tough competition to its counterpart. A typical serving of black tea consists of water and tea leaves and thus, one can say that it too is gluten-free. 

28. Getting To Know Some Best Varieties Of Assam & Black Tea

Let us know some varieties worth trying that the two teas offer.

Twinings Assam, Frontier Co-op, Vahdam are some best varieties. 

Black tea on the other hand has English breakfast solstice spice, Apricot Brandy, Lapsang Souchong as some remarkable varieties that every black tea lover ought to try once.

29. Assam Tea versus Black Tea: The Best Choice For Milk Tea

Let us compare them based on the option to be paired with milk.

India is a country where tea means a milky drink and since Assam tea makes for a great tea that can be made with milk this has become the most preferred choice. 

Black tea on the other hand is far behind Assam tea for the tea is preferred by many across the world and in India even without milk. However, lemon might be added to a hot concoction.

30. Is Assam Tea A More Expensive Buy or Black Tea?

Let us now get to know the tea that is a more expensive buy.

Assam tea’s Manohari Gold is breaking its own record each year. From being sold for Rs. 70,000 per kg in 2020 and in the year 2021 this tea brand was sold at Rs, 1 lakh at Guwahati Auction house has made Assam tea the most expensive tea in the world.

Black tea on the other hand is quite moderately priced and thus, calling Assam tea as the most expensive tea between the two is only befitting. 

31. The Food Pairings That Add Value To The Teas

Let us now check out some food items that are a treat with the tea in the last point of polarities.

Assam tea can be paired with any kind of food like fritters, cheese sandwiches, avocado toast, fruits, cheese, crackers, waffles, bagels, croissants, pancakes, cookies, cottage cheese salads.

Black tea on the other hand is best when combined with cheese, sausages, bacon, venison, pasta, salads high on the citrus element. 

This concludes my blog but I will be back soon with a new blog. I hope that this blog was an insightful one and if you want to ask me any questions mention them in the comments section below. I will gladly answer them for you. Do visit my website for tea-intoxication. 

 Happy Sipping!