There is a bit of an art to brewing the perfect cup of tea, but don't worry, it's not as hard as you'd think. If you are using a high-quality loose leaf tea, then at worst you'll end up with a very nice cup of tea. At best? You'll be hooked on the amazing taste and aroma of the loose leaf. Loose leaf tea has several advantages over packaged, bagged teas. For one, bagged teas and its ingredients get crushed into fine particles during manufacturing and loses many of its flavor, antioxidants, and health benefits. Because loose leaf tea contains larger particles of tea leaves, herbs, spices, flowers, fruits, and so on, the taste and health benefits are much more potent. In fact, the potency of the loose leaf tea allows you to brew the same tablespoon of tea two or three times! Also, most bagged teas contain bleach or chlorine in the tea bags. I don't know about you, but I don't necessarily want bleach particles in my drink.
Now that you've stocked up on the loose leaf, you need something to infuse it with. One of my personal favorites is the stainless steel infuser basket that we have at the shop ($17). The basket sits in any mug and is very easy to clean, making it perfect for the workplace and on the go. There are endless options for infusers, which can be overwhelming, but don't stress too much, just pick one that you like! Some of the infusers we carry are just fun and cute, so don't be afraid to pick an infuser and give it a try. If you're still feeling intimidated, try a box of our disposable filters. Simply put, they're tea bags. Our tea bags contain no chemicals and are decomposable, so you can feel good about that, too.
Now that you are ready to infuse, you will measure out the amount of tea you need and heat the water to a specific temperature based on the type of tea. In general, you need a teaspoon of tea per 8 ounces. I like my tea a little strong, so when I'm making a mug of tea, I use two heaping teaspoons. If you are brewing up white or green tea, you want your water to be a little cooler at 150-160 degrees, and only steep for 2-4 minutes. If you're using a simple tea kettle, just let the hot water set for a few minutes before pouring it over your tea. If you are brewing black, oolong, rooibos, or herbal tea, you can immediately pour the hot/boiling water over your leaves. Steep for 4 minutes for black tea and 5-8 minutes for oolong, rooibos and herbal.
Voila! You have an amazing cup of tea. Now for the last step- while your tea is cooling off, put on your slippers, get cozy in your blankets, and prepare yourself to fully enjoy a hot, comforting cup of tea!