We want to share a secret with you. It's easier to make a bad cup of tea than a good one! For those of you that love a hot cuppa, we have put together our five top tips that can make all the difference:
Tip 1: Use quality loose leaf tea
We get it, we understand the perceived convenience factor that comes with a tea bag, but using an infuser and loose leaf is really only one extra step, and the difference in flavour you get from using quality whole organic tea leaves is more than worth it.
Tip 2: Measure your tea
When you brew tea, you’re working with a ratio of a certain amount of leaves to water. When you have a new tea with a different leaf size use an electronic scale to get the balance right. It’s also a good idea to measure the water. A good benchmark is 2.5g of tea for 250ml of water.
Tip 3: Control the water temperature
Each type of tea needs to be brewed in water at different temperatures. Strong black teas can withstand higher temperatures such as our Authentic Thieves’ Tea or Mama D’s Rebel Tea, but boiling water can burn the leaves and ruin the flavour of the more delicate green and white teas. If you want to measure your water temperature to the degree, you can purchase a jug or kettle with temperature settings for that perfect pour. We recommend the Alinea Select Kettle that offers 5 different temperature settings.
Tip 4: Use a timer
The length of time you leave a tea to steep is critical, and not all teas have the same steeping time. The optimal brewing times and temperatures are featured on all of our tea packaging. You can use the timer on your phone, or if you’re a little bit fancy, you could pick-up a timer from Mooch.
Tip 5: Re-brew your leaves
Quality whole leaf teas can be brewed 3-4 times and retain good flavour, the secret to this is to remove all of the liquid from the leaves after each infusion. We love the old Chinese proverb that says “the first infusion is for your enemy, the second for your friends and the third for yourself!”
Once you have mastered some of these basics and have the right equipment, enjoy getting to know some new teas and maybe even be adventurous and play around with cold infusions!
As we come into summer an iced tea is definitely on the cards and as any iced tea savant will tell you, cold brew is the way to go. To extract the flavours slowly and gently in cool water releases less tannins and leaves very little or no bitterness. The resulting smooth and refreshing tea can be quite a revelation.
Here’s our 'how to' for the best cold brew:
Cold brewed tea made from high quality leaves is super simple and is a great way to experience tea in a whole new way.
Step 1: In a jug or large teapot combine approximately 1 litre of water with 12g of loose leaf tea (the general rule is about 2-3g per 250ml)
Step 2: Secure lid and place it in the fridge to cold brew for 8-12 hours, typically overnight.
Step 3: Remove the teapot from the refrigerator and strain the tea or remove the diffuser basket.
Step 4: Your cold brew is now ready to drink over ice or you can store it in the fridge for 2-3 days in a sealed bottle.
Any tea can be cold brewed. In our experience the more delicate light, floral herbal tea varieties gave us especially delicious results, our Sumudu Chai is a firm favourite and our Blue Lemongrass is a beautiful cold infusion that can be done with soda water for something a little different too. These cold infusions could become a mixer for your favourite cocktail or a great alternative to the typical non alcoholic drinks.