Brewing Loose Leaf Tea
Loose Leaf Tea Many consider the process of brewing tea to be as simple as pushing a button or tossing a tea bag into a cup of water. However, to brew great tea, especially loose leaf tea, there exists a...
Many consider the process of brewing tea to be as simple as pushing a button or tossing a tea bag into a cup of water. However, to brew great tea, especially loose leaf tea, there exists a universe of techniques and traditions that can render a cup of mind-blowingly good tea.
First, one must understand the diverse world of teas and flavors. Your standard tea leaves come in three varieties (black, green, and white) depending where on the tea plant they are harvested. The darker the leaf the more caffeine is in it, the more bitter the taste, and the shorter the ideal brew time.
Then, there are countless herbal teas which vary in flavor and intensity but (with the exception of yerba mate') are largely caffeine free and generally require a longer brew time than regular tea leaves. Many herbal teas in fact offer mild sedative effects, calming the drinker. Some common varieties of herbal tea are chamomile, rooibos, and echinacea.
Both Herbal and regular teas are usually infused or blended with other flavors such as peppermint, ginger, and dried fruits and berries to add complexity to the brewed tea's taste.
To brew good loose leaf tea one must have a good tea strainer, a pot with measurable temperature, and (of course) about a teaspoons worth of good loose leaf tea. If the tea is bought a bulk tea shop there is usually the correct time and temperature written down somewhere on the tea container. Typically most black teas require a temperature of about 218 degrees fahrenheit and a brew time of less than 3 minutes, green and most herbal teas take a similar temperature but require about 5 minutes of brew time, and white and rooibos tea require at least 5 minutes and as long as 20 minutes to properly brew. Pour you hot water onto a or pot and place you tea (in strainer, of course) into your tea for the desired amount of time.
Enjoy the complex and beautiful world of tea and don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about tea and tea brewing techniques.