It’s all about the details when it comes to making a perfect cup of tea.

Of course you can just boil some water and grab a tea bag but if you want to elevate the experience, there are a couple of extra steps you can take.

How do you make tea properly?

[1] Warm the tea pot and teacups.

[2] Use cold filtered water.

[3] Setting the correct water temperature for your tea.

[4] Using 1 heaping teaspoon of tea per cup.

[5] Steeping whole leaf tea or high quality tea.

[6] Setting the timer to steep the tea for the right amount of time.

And my reward? A perfect pot of tea each and every time.

For me, the joy of tea is in the ritual. The more I repeat the series of steps for brewing tea the proper way, the more I enjoy it.

There are many ways to make a cup of tea using different vessels but the easiest is in a teapot.

The other methods use country-specific steeping pots or cups like gaiwan (Chinese) or yixing teapot (Chinese), or kyusu (Japanese). There is a bit of technique and formality to using each of these vessels so it’s not as easy to use as a simple teapot.

Water for Tea

I like to use filtered water for tea. Use clean, cold water that won’t add any other taste to your tea.

Water Temperature

Water that has come to a gentle boil is best for black and oolong tea. For green and white tea, go for a lower temperature (simmered water).

Best Tea to Steep

I rarely use tea bags since the tea is usually not as good as whole or loose leaf tea.

Tea in tea bags are the leftover broken bits, or “tea dust”, collected after whole tea has been processed. That doesn’t sound too appealing does it?

Good quality tea is a rolled whole tea leaf. As the tea steeps, it will unfurl in the hot water and you should be able to see the entire leaf. Whole, loose leaf tea is the best tea to steep.

Steeping Time

Oversteeping tea leads to a bitter cup. This is the time to use the timer on your phone.

Follow the steep time recommendations on the tea package, but roughly it is: black tea usually steeps for 4-5 minutes, green and oolong for 3 minutes, and white tea for 4 minutes.

Once the time is up, your tea is ready to drink. Don’t leave the tea leaves sitting in water since that just makes the tea way too strong and bitter.

If you’re making a big pot of tea, use a tea filter to take out the leaves after the steep time. You can add the filter back in the teapot if you want to steep the tea again in hot water.


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