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Tea Trucs - Tips for brewing better tea


Richard Kilgore
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Please tell us what you have learned that makes for better tea brewing.

I'll kick it off with a few basics ---

1) Use the correct amount of leaf (leaf:water ratio)

2) Use the correct temperature for the type of tea leaf

3) Violate 2 & 3. That is, experiment with all the variables and see what pleases you.

More later.

What have you learned in making your tea?

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-If you have access to really good tap water, use that instead of bottled water. There's more oxygen in tap water.

-Use good-quality tealeaves.

-For some teas, I find it's helpful to rinse the leaves.

-Use a tea timer (or similar).

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If your tea is a little weak for your taste, try 1) using more leaf, or 2) use a higher temp water. For example if you used a teaspoon of tea leaf, try 1 1/2 next time, or if you brewed it with 195 F water, next time try 200 F or higher.

I also do this if after two or three infusions of a tea leaf Western style the tea is a little weak: use a little less quantity of water and/or raise the temp. Sometimes this allows for another infusion or two.

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If your teapot cools faster than you can drink your tea - and you don't have a tea cozy to keep it warm - just wrap it in a tea towel. I even do that with Chinese Yixing pots.

Have any tips for us today?

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Please tell us what you have learned that makes for better tea brewing.

I'll kick it off with a few basics ---

1) Use the correct amount of leaf (leaf:water ratio)

2) Use the correct temperature for the type of tea leaf

3) Violate 2 & 3. That is, experiment with all the variables and see what pleases you.

More later.

What have you learned in making your tea?

I try never to violate rule #1,but everything else is *up for grabs*.

"As life's pleasures go, food is second only to sex.Except for salami and eggs...Now that's better than sex, but only if the salami is thickly sliced"--Alan King (1927-2004)

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If your tap water has an off-taste or is too hard, try filtering your water with an in-line filtering system or a simple and inexpensive Britta (or similar) filter jug. Works for me.

Avoid distilled water, which will make your tea taste flat.

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If your tap water has an off-taste or is too hard, try filtering your water with an in-line filtering system or a simple and inexpensive Britta (or similar) filter jug. Works for me.

Avoid distilled water, which will make your tea taste flat.

Richard-This makes a lot of sense.Distillling takes the positive qualities out of water just like it takes the negative qualities out. That is why Lu Yu ( the tea saint) believed that the best waters came from specific parts of specific rivers.

"As life's pleasures go, food is second only to sex.Except for salami and eggs...Now that's better than sex, but only if the salami is thickly sliced"--Alan King (1927-2004)

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Good advice above.

If you want to take it to the next level, the trick is to toss the leaves loose into the pot - no tea balls, mesh baskets, etc. You'll be surprised at what it does to the quality & complexity of your cup.

Of course you need to strain it off after brewing is done. I use 2 pots, one for brewing & one for pouring, since I always brew 2-3 cups at a time. Each pot gets warmed with near-boling, & then boiling, water before use.

Thank God for tea! What would the world do without tea? How did it exist? I am glad I was not born before tea!

- Sydney Smith, English clergyman & essayist, 1771-1845

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Good advice above.

If you want to take it to the next level, the trick is to toss the leaves loose into the pot - no tea balls, mesh baskets, etc.  You'll be surprised at what it does to the quality & complexity of your cup.

Of course you need to strain it off after brewing is done.  I use 2 pots, one for brewing & one for pouring, since I always brew 2-3 cups at a time.  Each pot gets warmed with near-boling, & then boiling, water before use.

Thanks ghostrider. I agree. Letting the leaves open up fully is the best. I also sometimes do this when brewing in a large cup: one to brew loose leaves, then pour through an infuser placed in the second cup.

Anyone have any tips for us today?

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