This was sent to me by Bonnie a while back, and I really, really wanted to brew it gong fu style but I really didn’t want to be tied to the kitchen stove for 18 infusions! I vowed that I would not try it until I had a variable temperature kettle to make it easy. (The ancient Chinese didn’t have to worry about it. They had cast iron warmers with coals beneath that kept the water nice and hot for a long time! I have used my tetsubin in a similar way but a tea light candle doth not make the same heat as coals!)

So, of course my shipping notice said that my new Krups kettle would get here on the day I was going to be out of town ALL DAY LONG. But my neighbor watched for it and snagged it so it wouldn’t be in danger on the porch! And now the tea…

I out 2T in my little thick and easy gaiwan and gave it two rinses as the website suggested. The steeps are about four seconds and believe me, that is enough! The later steeps are my favorite, and quite frankly I feel like I am floating because I have drunk so much tea! Hubby abandoned me several steeps ago so here I am plugging on all alone and drinking it all! They aren’t kidding when they say you can expect about 18 infusions.

The first steeps were a bit astringent because I was having trouble juggling the new kettle and the somewhat awkward place I put it to be near an outlet and getting back to the tray in four seconds! They weren’t bad, just not remarkable. The later steeps are quite good – lots of stone and mineral taste in this with a nice overtone of the apricots and even a little spice like Ceylon cinnamon, the milder sort.

I plan to try it western style very soon! I will also review the Krups. Spoiler: I think I am going to love it, and youngest has already claimed it for making her tea on school days!

Azzrian

Congrats on the new kettle! You know …. I can get ahold of those coals! ..

ashmanra

I suppose if I am really bad for the next few weeks, Santa will bring some coals! But I still wouldn’t have one of those tall iron heating units they used…I suppose if I were very good all year I might get that next year!

TheTeaFairy

Well Ashmanra, you be a good girl now! (But remember that being too good takes the fun out of life sometimes!)
The coal thing sounds really cool…
Before I goy my own variable kettle, I was also using a cast iron pot to keep water hot for the gaiwan, but as you mentioned, it not very efficient…once you go variable temp, you never look back! Have fun with yours :-)

Bonnie

I have a glass pot and pour my boiling water into the preheated pot and cover it with a thick dome tea cozy which keeps the water up to high temp for at least 4 steepings. Some people I know wrap a towel around a pot of water and do the same thing.

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Azzrian

Congrats on the new kettle! You know …. I can get ahold of those coals! ..

ashmanra

I suppose if I am really bad for the next few weeks, Santa will bring some coals! But I still wouldn’t have one of those tall iron heating units they used…I suppose if I were very good all year I might get that next year!

TheTeaFairy

Well Ashmanra, you be a good girl now! (But remember that being too good takes the fun out of life sometimes!)
The coal thing sounds really cool…
Before I goy my own variable kettle, I was also using a cast iron pot to keep water hot for the gaiwan, but as you mentioned, it not very efficient…once you go variable temp, you never look back! Have fun with yours :-)

Bonnie

I have a glass pot and pour my boiling water into the preheated pot and cover it with a thick dome tea cozy which keeps the water up to high temp for at least 4 steepings. Some people I know wrap a towel around a pot of water and do the same thing.

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Bio

I am a music teacher and homeschooling mom who started drinking loose leaf tea about four years ago! My daughters and I have tea every day, and we are frequently joined by my students or friends for “tea time.” Now my hubby joins us, too. His tastes have evolved from Tetley with milk and sugar to mostly unadorned greens.

We have learned so much history, geography, and culture in this journey.

My avatar is a mole in a teacup! Long story…

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North Carolina

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