Tea Brewing Guide
Tea Brewing GuideThe first cup of tea was the result of a happy accident over 5000 years ago. As a boiling pot of water sat waiting for the Chinese Emperor Shen Nong, the winds of fate sent a couple leaves fluttering into the brew. Tasting the resulting mixture, the emperor exclaimed that it gave “vigor to the body, contentment to the mind and determination of purpose.” Today, tea is one of the world's most popular beverages. There are now countless varieties and blends of tea, and an incredible array of technology and contraptions suggested for brewing it. Indeed, to someone venturing to brew their first cup, all this noise could be truly overwhelming! However, tea at its heart is a simple drink to make and once you get the basics down, you’ll feel confident in experimenting on your own in no time!
How to Brew the Perfect Cup of TeaWhen it comes to brewing tea, it is important to remember that the rules are merely recommendations. The following is a tried-and-true guide to help you consistently arrive at a delicious cup of tea, but feel free to deviate at any time to explore your own personal tastes for YOUR perfect cup.
Step 1: Gather Your Materials
Prepare Yourself for SuccessAs with any venture in life, having the right tools can make all the difference in achieving the results you want. Here is a good list of things to start out with:
- Amora Tea Blend of your choice
- Your Favorite Mug or Tumbler
- Cold Water
- Tea Infuser
- Sugar, Milk, or Lemon to taste
Step 2: Know Your TeaLike people, all teas are different and have different environments that they respond best to. Some teas reveal their ultimate depths of flavor when steeped in boiling water, while others the same temperature will turn their flavors bitter. Before you steep your tea, it’s important to know the recommended Temperature and Steeping Time for the variety and blend:
Temperatures and Steeping Time
- Black tea - 190 to 210 degrees for 3 to 5 minutes. Black tea has the highest amount of oxidation, resulting in dark color of leaves, robust flavor, and higher caffeine content.
- Green tea – 150 to 180 degrees for 2 to 4 minutes. Far less oxidized than Black teas, Green tea’s delicate leaves will sometimes turn bitter when steeped at too high of a temperature.
- Herbal tea – 190 to 210 degrees for 3 to 7 minutes. Herbal teas are made of a variety of different edible plants and therefore ideal temperatures and steeping times may vary - refer to the packaging for your selected tea. However, one of the awesome things about herbal teas is that they usually never turn bitter no matter how long you steep them!
Step 3: Use Fresh Cold WaterWhile not all of us are sages with access to a fresh mountain spring, it is important to use the highest quality water available to achieve an excellent cup of tea. Always use cold water. If using water from a tap, it is highly recommended that it is filtered. It can be tempting to reboil the water leftover in the kettle from the last tea time, however, doing so will release much of the oxygen in the water and leave you with a flat tasting cup of tea.
Step 4: Choose The Proper MugIn choosing the proper vessel to hold your tea, it is important to select something that fits the activities you will be doing while drinking your tea. If you will be taking a slow sips while watching the sunrise or reading a book before bed, your favorite mug or teacup is the perfect choice! However, if you will be drinking you tea during your morning commute, it may be a good idea to place your tea in something more mobile and insulated like a tumbler. Lukewarm tea never was a crowd pleaser.
Step 5: Boil WaterNow things are really heating up! Place your desired amount of water into the kettle and heat the water to the ideal temperature for your selected tea. Remember, a watched kettle never boils! But don’t wander too far: you don’t want to over boil your water (this will release more oxygen from the water and make your tea taste flat!). If you don't have a thermometer, no worries! You can read the temperature of the water by just watching the bubbles. At 160 to 170 degrees, you will begin to see small bubbles float to the water’s surface. At 180 to 190 degrees, you will start to see strings of bubbles swell up from the bottom of your kettle. And at 210 degrees, you will have a steady rolling boil.
Step 6: Warm Your MugOnce your water reaches the desired temperature and BEFORE pouring your official cup to brew, poor a small amount of hot water into your mug and swirl it around - this will warm the inside of your mug. In doing so, you will ensure that when you do pour your cup of tea that the temperature won’t drop the moment it touches the cold rims of the mug and effect the steeping temperature.
Step 7: Time to SteepWith the desired amount of tea in your infuser (a good rule of thumb is 1 teaspoon for 6 ounces of water), place the infuser inside your mug and gently pour the hot water from your kettle over the infuser and into the mug. Now that your tea and water are in order, all you have to do is wait for your cup of tea to finish steeping!
Step 8: Sit Back, Relax, and EnjoyAfter the steeping time for your tea has eloted, remove the tea infuser from your mug. This is a great time to add anything else you would like in your tea, like milk or lemon, if you so choose. Enjoy!
Tea Tips and Tricks:
- Add sugar or your sweetener of choice to your mug before you pour the hot water for your cup of tea. The hot water will dissolve your sweetener quickly and effectively so no lumps are left at the bottom.
- Add any other additives (milk, cream, lemon, etc) to your cup of tea after it has finished seeping. If adding before, the temperature of whatever you are adding will potentially affect the temperature that your tea is steeping at.