How to Steep Hot Tea

Posted: 03/31/2010

You will extract the most pleasure from fine tea, steeped with care. The Republic of Teas Minister of Fire & Water suggests the following step-by-step ritual for infusing hot tea:

Heat Your Water

  • It begins with the waterthe element that brings tea to its full potential. Fresh water yields a better cup. We recommend using filtered, spring or bottled water.
  • Fill your tea kettle with fresh, cold water and heat to a rolling boilunless youre making green tea or 100% White Tea. In that case, stop short of boiling to avoid cooking the delicate tea.
  • If youre using a teapot, warm it first by swirling in a splash of steamy water and pour it out.
  • Plan on about one teaspoon of tea or herbs or one tea bag per six-ounce cup. If using whole leaf tea, place tea in infusing basket or teapot.

Time Your Steeping

  • Pour the water over the tea, cover if in a pot, and infuse to taste. Different teas take well to different infusing times. Experiment to find your ideal time, but take care dont steep for too long or youll find your tea has gone bitter or acidic.

Enjoy Your Hot Tea

  • Remove the tea bag or infuser, or use a strainer for the leaves. Pour the steaming tea into a cup and let it cool for a moment.
  • Sip. Let the infusion please your palate. Enjoy the nuances, the complexity and character. This is drinking tea.

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