I used a gift card I received as a prize from work to purchase this, because I wanted something easy to use at my desk to brew loose tea, and tea balls/tea eggs just do not cut it for brewing a decent cuppa (not to mention, they are a pain to clean, especially at work). After I left that job, this item was relegated to the back of my cabinet at home. I’ve once again gotten into tea and have been brewing quite a few single mugs worth over the course of a day. This gadget is perfect for that task.
How I use it: 2 Teaspoons (I happen to have a measuring spoon that is 2tsp) and boiling water (I drink mostly black teas or fruit tisanes), set a timer, and when the timer goes off, place this over my prepared mug of choice.
I found that if I do not fill the Teamaker up all the way with water, but just over 3/4 full, I do not end up with excess liquid leftover in the Teamaker after straining into a mug, nor do I have a tea spill from overfilling a cup.
I’ve misplaced the little plastic “coaster” thing that came with the Teamaker, but I usually do not experience any little drips or leaking, even after straining the tea into a cup and setting the Teamaker back on the counter.
Clean up is a snap with this strainer, unlike tea balls, tea eggs, or infuser baskets. Rinse with warm water and pour the spent leaves out into the sink, and place – lid open – on a towel to air dry. I probably should be washing this with dish soap or at least washing the filter mesh after each tea, but as far as I can tell I have not had any flavor crossover from brewing two different teas nearly back to back.
The one and only drawback I have found is that the plastic does not hold heat well, nor is it easy or effective to “warm the pot” first. But, for tasting a new tea without brewing an entire pot, allowing the leaves plenty of room to circulate and unfurl, and easy as pie brewing and clean up, this gadget can not be beat! I’m also looking forward to picking up the Ingenuitea from Adagio, a similar product, to compare (and have one at home and at work).