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7 Steps to a Perfect Cup of Tea

1. Premium Tea

This may seem obvious, but quality of tea does make a difference in the cup! To make a great cup of tea, start with fine, premium loose leaf tea. Loose leaf tea is fresher, fuller, and much more flavorful than bag tea. Plus loose leaf has more health benefits since it retains more of the plant’s vital essence!

2. Water

One of the most important factors to a good cup of tea besides the quality of the tea leaf is the quality of the water used to make the tea. If the water is bad, it won’t matter how good the tea to be steeped is. We recommend filtered water or spring water.

3. Ratios

General rule of thumb, use approximately 1 teaspoon of loose leaf tea to every 8 ounces of water. If a stronger cup is preferred, use a little more; and vice versa. For some varieties however, a ½ teaspoon will do because the leaf is tightly twisted and curled (i.e. gunpowder) or is in granular form (i.e. Irish Breakfast).

4. Water Temperature

Different tea leaves require different temperature water to get the maximum benefits and best flavor. For example, black tea leaves can be rather hardy in general and can stand a hot water that is just below boiling. White and green tea leaves tend to be more delicate and should be steeped with a water that ranges around 165 - 185°F, depending on the tea variety. Steeping with water that is too hot for the leaf can scorch it which can create a bitter cup. Water that isn’t hot enough may not get all the flavor out of the leaf resulting in a weak cup. (Refer to our Tea Brew Guide)

5. Steeping Time

Just like each tea variety needs the appropriate temperature water, each tea type has an optimum steep time. Of course, much of this will depend on personal taste. There are guidelines that can be helpful, but really, it’s up to the individual. Some like a strong cup and some like a lighter cup. In general, green tea and white tea only need about 3 minutes to steep. Black tea can be steeped up to 5 minutes. Steep too long and bitter tea will be the result.

6. Infusing

Loose leaf tea will expand and needs lots of room when steeping so be sure the infuser basket or steeper is large enough. If too much tea is put into too small a steeper, water will not be able to move in through and around the leaves, the leaves will not be able to fully expand, and basically wastes tea. Part of the fun is watching how the leaves grow and dance in the water; presses are great for this purpose!

7. Mindfulness

Tea has a magical way of impacting our day, our moods, slowing us down, and allowing us space to simply savor life. This is why throughout history in multiple cultures tea intertwines spiritually and ceremonially. In creating a perfect cup of tea, fill it with intention—whether it be joy, gratitude, healing, peace, grounding...whatever is called for in the moment.

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