Tea is more than just for drinking. It has ritualistic qualities that have brought people together for many generations. It connects cultures and represents the essence of love through connection.
As an aspiring tea specialist, I spend most of my time drinking and educating myself on tea. It is my strongest passion. I thoroughly enjoy sharing this knowledge. Over the years, I’ve learned from my practice some tips and tricks on brewing the best cup of tea. You can implement these tips at home to get the most out of your tea experience (and maybe be able to impress your friends/family). Or simply, you just want to learn how to make better tea. Here are some things to think about.
- Always Start with Cold, Fresh Water
One of the most overlooked aspects when making tea is your water. The type of water you use addition to its temperature determines the tea’s taste. When brewing tea, choose filtered or spring water. Tap water usually adds a ‘mineral’ flavor that is not ideal for drinking tea. In addition, try to refrain from re-boiling old water. Boiled water loses oxygen which may result in a duller tea flavor.
- Warm Up Your Cup Beforehand
This is something I always do. Warming up your tea cup before pouring your tea is important–though if you’re on the go, this is not completely necessary. Give your cup a hot water rinse then it's ready to go. The initial temperature of your cup affects the cooling down time. This trick will prevent the tea from getting cold too quickly.
- Choose a Tea You Love
White tea, herbal tea, or black tea, whatever makes you happy. It’s important to choose a tea you like. Drinking tea simply for its health benefits defeats the purpose of tea. Make tea an act of self-love. From there, you can discover the true essence of drinking tea.
- Consider Your Water Temperature
Once you’ve chosen your tea, knowing what temperature to brew it at is essential. There is no right or wrong way to do this. However, if you’re looking to optimize your tea game, this can be crucial. If you live in America, most of us are used to pouring boiling water over our teabags. However, believe it or not, for some teas, this can make the tea taste bitter by extracting bitter tannins (or simply burning the tea leaves). You don’t need a thermometer, just a bit of knowledge and intuition.
- White & Green Teas are more delicate and should be heated around 170°-180° (just under boiling).
- Black Teas around 210° (after a full boil)
- Oolongs vary in variety but usually work within higher temperatures (180°- 210°). I usually go just before a rolling boil if I don’t know the exact temperature.
- For Puerh, a rolling boil (212°) is preferred.
The White Rabbit
The White Rabbit is an artist who focuses on creating a community of like-minded individuals passionate about holistic living, tea, skincare, and more. Currently majoring in french and dance at Bennington College. She takes her many passions and pours them into poetry, short stories, and blogs (wuweicooking & Lelapinblancbeauty - Skincare, Beauty Blog)