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ChrisG said

Green tea for long steep

Im not sure where I saw this but is there a green tea that is drank in a clear glass tumbler without straining with an unlimited steep time?

I think I had seen a show with a bunch of guys playing chess all with loose tea floating in the tumbler just drinkingit while playing.

Any thoughts?

12 Replies
AJ said

Are you looking for the specific tea? Because it could have been any, honestly. Most companies that carry clear tea tumblers advertise that if you just “use less”, then the tea is fine to steep indefinitely (although I am doubtful of this, and have only done it for additional steeps after the first).

The tumblers aren’t that hard to find. Tea Libre specializes in them, Teavana has their own, Teas Etc., Perennial Tea Room, and there’s a bunch available on Amazon as well.

For a time, Tea Libre DID sell a specific tea for their tumbler—a green tea—but it doesn’t seem they carry it anymore. Probably just a low-tannin tea that did not go bitter as easily as others.

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THX2250 said

You can do this with Long jing greens. Use a glass (pyrex, or something that can take hot water without cracking) and add some long jing (dragon well, some places call it) tea to the bottom of the empty glass. Then, use about 80 C (not boiling, don’t scald the leaves) water. Fill the glass half full, swish the water around a little. Wait a minute, then top the glass off.

Then, drink away! When the glass is about half empty, top it off with hot water, and keep re-steeping. You can drink this way for awhile….at least for a few games of chess. It won’t get bitter. I use this method a lot at the office, since you can avoid the gaiwan or teapot, and drink until content.

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ChrisG said

Thanks for posting – ya im interested in what type of tea this would be that you can just steep for the length of the drink without it becoming astringent.

The tumblers were more like just straight up 12 oz glass like this:

http://www.crateandbarrel.com/crescent-cooler-glasses-set-of-six/f35312

I wonder if it was green steeped at low temps?

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ChrisG said

Thanks THX2250 – i have some dragon well and will try it out with a mason jar

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AJ said

I would go with THX2250’s suggestion, yeah. I’m sure you’ll also be getting suggestions from a few other Steepsterites on good greens for steeping long, as well.

As far as the glasses posted go—drinking hot from those would probably burn your fingers, unless you have podstakanniks for them, since they’re a good size.

If you can recall how they were drinking it in the show, you might be able to guess if it was chilled or not (if there was no visible steam). Grasping from the very top of the glass, above the drink-line (as in Turkish, Moroccan, Chinese and Japanese tea cultures, which traditionally use handle-less tea cups) for hot beverages. As opposed to grasping the body without a handle, in a regular glass, in which case, it probably was a chilled tea.

Mason jars are good and thick, but you might also want to look into just basic double-walled glasses (to minimize heat transfer to your fingers). Making sure they’re heat-resistant ones, as THX2250 suggested.

The Bodum Pavina double-walled glasses are not only beautiful but stay cool to the touch, and they come in sizes from (if I remember right) 2.5oz to 15.

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ChrisG said

Thanks AJ – I was just putting up those glasses to show what they were drinking out of. I think a clear mug or a Bodum would do the trick.

Thanks everyone.

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I do this at work all the time! I’m drinking Autumn Lao Shan green this morning. (actually did Lao Shan black yesterday with great results). The “hot water” dispenser at work is luckily just right for green teas, so I usually use any old curled Chinese green tea I have on hand.

Example! (11oz glass mug from work w/Laoshan green)
http://imgur.com/SfuSl

Threw a pinch or two of leaves onto the bottom of the cup, then filled with hot water. I can start sipping right away, or let it sit (forgotten). I drink until I’m almost out of water, and then refill. If I start in the morning, I will keep refilling all day. If I didn’t use enough leaves to start with and my tea needs a refresh in the afternoon, I’ll throw in a new little pinch of leaves.

If you do it with Dragonwell, just try not to drink your brew all the way down before refilling with hot water. They don’t tend to due well once exposed to air after brewing for resteeps (at least in my experience) and I find they last longer and sweeter if I refill when I’m almost out of tea-water (instead of all-the-way-out).

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chadao said

It is actually a myth that ALL green teas go bitter if steeped for too hot or too long. A super-fine quality green tea will never go bitter, no matter how long you steep it. If the water is too hot, the tea will simply lose its flavor, and the brew will just taste like hot water. It is extremely difficult to find teas this good, that you can steep right in a glass, for an indefinite amount of time, here in the U.S. The only companies that I know of that sell green tea of this quality are Red Blossom Tea company (San Fransisco) and Seven Cups (Tucson).

This is how I drink almost all of my teas while in the shop. I agree 100% about the quality; I am currently drinking a high mountain oolong from Taiwan that has been steeping for the past 30 minutes and will not get bitter no matter how hard I try =). The nicer teas are certainly more difficult to find and you will also pay more for them, but you can also get many more steeps so the cost per cup is not always prohibitive. I will refrain from touting our teas (as difficult as that may be ; ) ) but there are several shops that do those higher quality teas in every type.
-Arthur

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chadao said

As far as the long jing thing goes, I have tried plenty of Long Jings that go bitter when mishandled. This is not the answer that you are looking for.

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ChrisG said

That’s interesting – so what would be a compound or variable in higher grade tea that does not make it bitter vs a lower grade?

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