What do you brew your tea in?
I’m still a newb in regards to teaware. I usually brew my teas in tea balls, infuser spoons, or my tumbler’s brew basket. If I feel like having more than one cup, I’ll use my glass blooming tea pot or my very cheap cast iron tea pot (which I bought from a small cooking store).
Now that I’ve bought a kyusu from Den’s Tea, I will brew my Japanese greens in it. I’m planning on buying myself, for my birthday, a gaiwan gongfu set, which I’ll use for whites, other greens, oolongs, puerhs, and pure blacks. I’m very excited about the idea of finally preparing tea with a gaiwan.
For everyday casual steeping, I use the Piao I infuser. For formal tea sessions, I will either use an Yixing teapot (for Oolongs/Puerhs) or a Gaiwan (Greens/Whites).
I use the Perfectea Tea Maker from Teavana. It’s affordable and efficient.
I have an adorable teapot-shaped infuser that I got as a gift. It’s not especially practical, but it is charming.
I also (very) recently got a Kati from Tea Forte that is quickly giving the duck a run for its money – http://www.teaforte.com/store/tea-accessories/cups/kati-tea-brewing-system/ It’s nice because the infuser is big and open, so you can watch the leaves unfurl on your higher quality teas.
I use a Bodum teapot if I want more than one cup or for a flowering tea – http://bodum.bodum.com/us/en-us/shop/detail/1842-01US/?navid=624
It’s not the most exciting, make-you-feel-like-a-tea-expert choice, but I recently got an infuser from The Tao of Tea, via iHerb (http://www.iherb.com/The-Tao-of-Tea-Easy-Tea-Brewer-1-Brewer/46663), and am very happy with it. If you have a tall, narrow cup, it traps the aroma almost as well as a teapot, and it’s a fine mesh. Best thing is that iHerb ships to Ireland (and New Zealand, I just checked!) for a flat rate of $4 for orders under 4 lbs. (And they calculate the weight as you add things to your shopping cart.) There are a couple of hair care products we can’t get here that I regularly order from them, and it was fun to find teaware too! (Of course, I couldn’t resist a tin of Tao of Tea as well.) The infuser is out of stock atm, but will be in shortly.
Starting off, I was just steeping the leaves in a large glass (it’s thick) and then transfer it into a mug.
Now that I’m really into it, if I need to make a larger batch I’ll steep it in the Bubble Pot I picked up at David’s Tea. If individually, I use the infuser that came with the pot and stick it into a mug and cover. :)
I’ll sometimes switch to putting it in a glass because I like to watch the leaves before transferring.
When I’m making at least 3 cups, I use a Russell Hobbes electric kettle because it has a separate warmer burner for the pot of finished steeped tea that keeps it at just the right temperature (I’m a slow tea drinker!). Here it is: http://www.amazon.com/Russell-Hobbs-RHTT9W-1-7-Liter-Electric/dp/B0038KVKE4
Prior to getting that when I was still heating water on the stove (eventually got sick of how long it took) I was using a blue Chatsford tea pot from Upton. And before THAT I was using the tea pot in my user pic, an Eva Zeisel knock-off (found at TJ Maxx of all places!) I love dearly but was way too large (and too pretty/precious) for regular use.
Now that I have learned from this community you can resteep many loose teas I’ve become very interested in getting a David’s Perfect Mug (tall and narrow just the way it should be!) or their Gung Fu teapot to let me do one cup at a time and keep re-steeping. It is too easy to amass more tea pots than one can actually use, alas…I lust after all the waaaaaay out of my budget ones from Mariage Freres!
I lust mightily for that Breville One-Touch. Maybe someday as a holiday present from my husband. ‘Til then though I’m very happy with the Russell Hobbes (it does take up double+ the amount of counter space, as a heads up).