Posted about how to make a perfect cup of tea

Hello everyone! I just posted a blog post called How To: Make the Perfect Cup of Tea. I’m genuinely interested to see what everyone here thinks about my philosophy and instructions. I also would love some feedback from everyone. Let me know if its not okay to post this kind of stuff. You can comment on the post or just reply to this post (that would probably be better, to keep the steepster momentum going!). This is the page:

Thanks everyone :)

13 Replies
AllanK said

There is rarely a reason to steep puerh as long as you suggest. Even if brewing ripe puerh western style and not gongfu style it usually needs only about 30 seconds to one minute. Also, at lease half of the people on this website brew Asian style and that requires completely different parameters. Also, whenever possible you should weigh tea fdor the optimum amount not use teaspoons.

I like the idea of weighing tea. I will have to look into this. I recently actually tried steeping puerh for only 2 minutes and I noticed a big difference in the flavor. It was cleaner and brighter than it normally is for me. Thank you for your reply!

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Gravity brewers are superfluous. What I’m drinking right now is a combination of scented looseleaf and a bag of PG Tips, brewed together in a 1qt Pyrex. Better teas get to go in teapots with stainless mesh baskets.

Five for black tea is way too long. Some CTC are done in <2min and if you’re careful/they’re good tea you can do three successive 90sec rebrews.

AllanK is right about weighing. If your tea leaf is longer than your spoon bowl depth, you’re going to get a very inaccurate measurement.

Traditional Yerba Mate is an entirely different kettle of fish. Look down the board for a question about whole-leaf Yerba; I found a very good site that discusses brewing, gourd care, and everything related to that plant’s consumption.

The length of tea leaf being longer than the spoon bowl depth has come up as an issue for me! Especially with my jasmine scented white tea. I think its probably a good idea for me to learn about weighing my tea. For Yerba Mate, I was mainly trying to assist people who are using the tea bags, but I should probably specify that, since the rest of what I’m talking about is geared toward loose leaf tea. Thank you so much for the feedback!

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onjinone said

Those are incredibly long steep times. There’s no need to go 7 minutes for tea.

Puer doesn’t need to be over a minute.

AllanK said

I have seen the seven minute suggestion for rooibos and herbals elsewhere. Some herbal blends do benefit from a long steep. A good example of this is any valerian root tea where you are trying to extract as much of the root as possible.

Cacao based tisanes, as well.

AllanK said

Also a 30 second rinse for puerh (or flush as she calls it) is incredibly long. A flash rinse or up to about ten seconds is more than enough.

onjinone said

Yeah, my bad on that for rooibos. I admittedly don’t have as much experience as that so I should’ve specified that I was referring to the Chinese teas.

As for the rinse, completely agree that 10 seconds is more than enough. Too long would just extract a lot of flavor that one wouldn’t be drinking.

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Just want to throw out that everyone has offered some really good feedback on how to improve steeping parameters/methods for general steeping, but that it’s also really important to remember that taste is SUPER subjective so there’s not really a ‘wrong’ way to make your tea either.

So, if a ten minute steep on your green tea produces the kind of cup that you personally enjoy then you’re still doing it right! Plus, I mean, I think most of us can agree that Sheng Pu’erh cold brewed with grape kool aid probably isn’t a great thing to suggest as a blanket recommendation for how to make your Sheng, but if someone is into that flavour combo then I’m not going to judge them for making a cup of tea that works for their tastes.

(I just feel like, while the intentions are good, there’s been so much critical feedback – and I don’t want OP to feel like she’s doing everything wrong.)


AllanK said

Now that is a combination I would never have thought of. Cold brewed sheng in grape cool aid. Now where would I actually find grape cool aid. I think sheng is easier to find. I fully agree that how one steeps his tea is very subjective. Even when steeping gongfu it is subjective. Some people begin with a flash steep while others start with 30 seconds.

Ha, I kind of just picked the most out there thing I could think of – but immediately after I realized something like Yak Butter Tea would have been a better example. ‘Cause that’s something that makes me wretch just thinking about it, but it’s a pretty traditional Tibetan thing so it’s a good example of how much tea tastes/preferences can vary :P

onjinone said

You’re totally right. Taste is very subjective and personal so even though there’s general guidelines, none of that matters as long as one enjoys that cup regardless of how it’s brewed!

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