Sakura said

Do you rinse your tea?

I’m not sure whether or not to rinse my Green tea that I ordered from China before consumption.

Do you guys do it?

Is it common practice to do this in Chinese culture?

24 Replies

I only due it with pu-erhs, but other people do for others.

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I think people recommend it. I only do it for oolongs. My mom (raised in China) does not rinse. So I don’t know if it’s common practice. It might depend on where you are from in China. My family is from a small village in the south. Perhaps in the larger cities with a history of courtly culture, the common practice is different.

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Most teas that I steep in my gaiwan, I do a preliminary rinse. This includes Pu-erh, Oolongs and some greens. I will occasionally steep a white tea in my gaiwan, and in this case, I usually do not rinse.

I also rinse the Vinegar Black Tea from Tea Farm.

Uniquity said

Good to know, i think I got a sample of that in your box o goodies!

I probably added that information to the steeping parameters, as I generally do with this tea. I made the mistake of trying it first without the rinse, and it was not worth drinking. But, after the rinse, this is actually pretty good.

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Uniquity said

I never rince, but I primarily drink black teas and flavoured teas.

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Dorothy said

I rinse my oolong and puerh, but not usually greens. Then again, I don’t drink green tea often enough. ;)

Additionally here is a blog post on the subject of rinsing you might enjoy reading: https://camellia-sinensis.com/carnet/?p=1409&lang=en

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I do it for pu-erh and rolled up oolong. Thats about it.

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OolongLily said

Pu-erh, oolong, some greens, and tightly rolled teas usually. You can always do a taste test. Doesn’t hurt to try it rinsed v not rinsed. Well, it might hurt your taste buds a bit depending on the tea, but they recover.

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K S said

Sorry not meaning ti hijack the thread but what is the reason for rinsing greens or for that matter oolongs? Puerh washing, I now understand thanks to my fellow steepsterites.

Dorothy said

For greens, rinsing bitterness and debris. For oolong (especially rolled), to “awaken” leaves, rinse debris.

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Angrboda said

I never do for anything. I’ve tried it, but I can’t tell any difference, so I don’t bother.

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Geoffrey said

Rinsing is customary in the Gongfu method of tea preparation, using a gaiwan or yixing teapot to brew many brief (3 – 30 second) infusions consecutively. If you’re using a gaiwan, you pour the hot water onto the leaves as if you’re going to brew your first infusion, then cover the gaiwan, pour off the water immediately, and discard the fluid. That is how the rinse is done in Gongfu Cha. Nowadays you’ll find people attributing various benefits to the practice, some of which have been mentioned here. Such as: “awakening” the leaves, washing away loose debris and astringency, etc. Traditionally, the practice also had a metaphysical significance, being considered a sacrifice of some kind to the ancestors or spirits. Or so I’ve been told.

I almost always brew my tea in the Gongfu style these days, and rinse pretty much everything. When brewing this way, the initial infusion (rinse) is typically very light and weak in flavor anyway, so it’s not really all that interesting to drink it. It can be the reverse with Pu-erh though, where the first infusion is pungent and unruly. With some Pu-erhs I’ll rinse twice before beginning to drink, as they’ve been asleep for a long time, and might be a bit surly if forced out of bed too quickly, so to speak.

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