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What am I doing wrong?

Whenever I’ve brewed tea lately, it has come out smelling repulsive after steeping. The pomegranate I’ve been raving about has started to taste horrendous, and one I’ve been brewing for a while (Teavana’s monkey picked oolong and asian white pear). I can’t figure out why it’s been so bad, maybe I could get some advice from someone who’s more educated than me on teas? (everyone on this forum)

25 Replies

First and foremost … how is the water quality? Are you using tap water? If so, are you filtering it? Freshly filtered tap water is the best choice for brewing tea (in my opinion). When the tea flavor has changed drastically from what you’re used to the first thing to do is check the water you’re using.

If the water quality is fine, other things to consider is the brewing vessel you’re using (is it in need of a cleaning … what about your tea cup?) How do you brew your tea?

There are any number of factors that could be the culprit. Have you recently changed the brand of dish soap/dishwasher detergent you use? It could also be something as simple as you could be coming down with a cold or the flu … this really affects the taste buds (I know because I’m sick at the moment and everything tastes different).

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I’ve tried it in two different pots. It can’t be the pot because the leaves smell bad right out of the strainer. The only tea this doesn’t happen to is my jasmine, and jasmine is the most sensitive of my teas when it comes to brewing

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tperez said

Hmm, is the pomegranate tea just old? That’s weird it started to taste bad all of a sudden…

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Had it for only 2 weeks. Could it be the way I’m storing it? Are glass jars a no-no?

tperez said

Glass jars are fine as long as you keep them out of the sun :)

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It could be the tannins staining your brewing basket. Try washing it in cream of tartar.
http://www.ehow.com/way_5554267_cleaning-cream-tartar.html

Andie select said

Which method do you use? The one mixed with vinegar? Never heard of using cream of tartar to clean. Definitely giving it a try.

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Would it be bad if I said that I’ve never cleaned out the tea strainer?

tperez said

Hehe, I think we’ve found the problem

Would boiling the strainer for a few minutes clean it enough? I’m glad that that’s the problem and I wasn’t botching the tea making process

Not sure I’ve never tried that! maybe with a bit of vinegar added?

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Ugh. This is getting frustrating. Every tea I’m making tastes horrible :|

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DaisyChubb said

I would take a big smell of your strainer – if something smells off, give it a clean – if you still smell it – keep cleaning and repeat until it doesn’t smell. It’ll at least help to show that you can’t make teas in it just yet!

In the meantime, why not throw some tea leaves in a mug and use a small plate to make a makeshift “gaiwan” for your tea. (decant into another mug) If it still tastes bad then you know it’s probably the water and not your strainer haha

I just tried that and it still smells bad. I think it’s just the tea. I’m just gonna stop using that tea because there’s obviously something wrong with it. I’m in the middle of a hurricane and I can’t just go out and get a different one hehe

DaisyChubb said

Ohh it’s just one type of tea! I thought it was maybe a few different kinds, aw that is sad :(

I think the remaining taste and smell stayed with me while I had my other tea which just made it seem that way. And that just so happened that it was the last I had of that one, just my luck :\

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Is there any chance that some moisture was left in your tea jar before putting the tea in there? I had a tea that went moldy once, because my sink had a leak…

Nah, I keep the jars as dry as possible.

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On an unrelated note, does anyone else think that all tea bags taste the same?

Uniquity said

I’m sure the bags taste the same, but the leaves inside sure taste different. Okay, bad joke. Loose leaf is superior to bagged for me, but there is definitely still a variety of tastes in the bagged stuff.

Babble said

“I’m sure the bags taste the same, but the leaves inside sure taste different.”
It took me a second.. but LOLOLOL!!

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