The word “Chai” is the Hindi word for tea. Though now common in Western culture and across the world, Masala Chai (Chai or Chai Tea, as we often refer to it) originated in South Asia.
Chai alone is loose-leaf black tea and hot milk. Masala Chai traditionally combines loose-leaf black tea, hot milk, and a hint of spices – often a mixture of cardamom, cloves, and cinnamon. On the other hand, the popular Chai latte is made with a powder or syrup, which imitates the flavor of spiced-chai and is, therefore, a lot sweeter than loose-leaf Chai.
Traditionally, Chai has a black loose-leaf tea base, and any NobiliTea Chai offering maintains this black tea base. However, Chai spices can also be combined with other tea leaf bases: green tea, oolong tea, rooibos tea, and even herbal tea.
Chai can be steeped in water alone, with a mixture of water and milk, or in milk alone. This is absolutely up to your own preferences. See our Steeping Guide to find proper water temperature and times depending on your base. How do you like to make your Chai? Let us know!
Tip: Never fully boil milk! This can leave it with an odd flavor. You want to heat it to the point where it steams, and bubbles form around the edges.