Loads of questions from a new tea fanatic

I’m only in high school but for the past couple of years I’ve been dabbling in the world of tea. I thought tea was only in tea bags until my much more cultured older cousin told me about loose tea and all the other stuff. So I took a trip Teavana (the only tea store even remotely close to where I live) and I bought a 16oz Yixing pot and bought myself some of the monkey picked oolong tea. Tea has completely replaced soda and vitamin water for me now, but I have some questions:

1) Loose tea leaves can be steeped multiple times, but where do I put the leaves between uses? I’ve been keeping it in the strainer all day and haven’t experienced any problems yet. But just making sure.

2) I hear you should only use 1 type of tea in a yixing pot. But how much of an effect would it really have if I use different types of tea (3 max) with it? They would either be oolong or green if that matters.

3) Would it be worth it to buy other tea seasonings (rock, sugar, honey, lemon, cinnamon sticks) to put into my oolong? Or does oolong only taste good when it’s plain?

Thanks in advance for your answers!

10 Replies
Bonnie said

Welcome to Steepster. You aren’t the only High School student here bu the way. I’m a grandmother and probably the oldest here but I drink tea with my teenaged granddaughters all the time ( one is on the couch now sleeping over).
Anyway, the leaves for steeping multiple times is usually done right away, back to back. If you want to save the leaves, on’t wait too long or mold will develop. I live in an arid climate where leaves dry if spread on a plate within 20 minutes. Most people can’t achieve this so use the leaves within a few hours.
If this isn’t possible you could always put the leaves in a bottle with water and let them cold brew in the frig. I often extend the use of leaves this way.
Rock sugar (raw sugar), artificial sweetener, and agave are the most popular sweeteners used on steepster for various reasons (flavor and health). Honey is used mostly for lemon tea’s and Chai. Milk, cream and/or almond or soy milk is added by some people to tea or to make latte’s.
Several websites are good for tea education. Teavivre, Verdant and Mandala have videos, articles and podcast’s.
This is a friendly, helpful community so just ask. There is another thread for new people that you might like to check out also.
I just followed you.

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Welcome to steepster…

Bonnie answered many of your questions, so I won’t go in to those much, but, I will address your question about the yixing tea pot. You should brew only one type of tea in it because the yixing clay absorbs flavors of the tea, and because each tea type has its own unique flavor, you could adversely affect the flavors of the teas eventually if you brew other types of tea in it. I’d recommend using the yixing pot for your favorite type of tea to give it a special significance and then use another vessel for other tea types.

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Thanks for the answers! I’m already learning a lot haha

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Lesli said

MMM – teavana hit you with the monkey-picked oolong! :) It is one of my favorite monkey-picked teas. I am new to steepster, but have been brewing loose leaf tea for a few years now. My suggestion is to by a steeper or one-time use tea bags to place in mugs you already own. This is the least expensive way you can purchase and enjoy other types of teas.

Happy Steeping!

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Nik select said

Regarding additives (sugar, honey, cinnamon sticks, whatever): there is no right way of doing things when it comes to additives. Since additives affect taste, whether you use them or not is entirely subjective, and you should do whatever you find tastes good! There are plenty of folks who are strict about their teas and will only drink them “pure.” There are also people who will only drink sweetened tea (a couple of friends I introduced to loose tea are like that). There are also people like me, who sometimes add things and sometimes don’t, depending on the tea, the time of day, the weather, and our mood. =)

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Babble said

Regarding sweeteners, I rarely add anything to my tea, especially if it’s just something plain like straight Oolong. However, with certain flavored teas, like a strawberry or chocolate tea, you may find it more beneficial to add sweetener to help bring out the flavor. It’s up to you.

Remember, of course, that adding sweetener adds calories, so try not to add to much if you do.

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Sare said

ok I have a question LOL how do i get someone name to be Darker then the rest of it ?!?!? So when i do swaps i can say in bold who Sent me a tea ?

Nik select said

Add an asterisk to both sides of the name: * Sare * (without the spaces) will show up as Sare. For more information:

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Donna A said

Welcome. On your question about re-steeping. I have re-steeped plain tea leaves for up to 24 hrs without any problems whatsoever.I just make sure they are drained, and give a quick rinse with hot water before re-steeping. I based this on David Duckler’s (Verdant Tea) advice in his questions and answers section on his website-see http://verdanttea.com/ask-us-anything/. He said mold could form after 2-3 days so you would probably not want to go over 24 hrs. He also said if you do this with blended teas such as with added fruit, keep in the refrigerator. With plain tea leaves this is not necessary due to tea’s natural anti-microbial properties. Hope this advice helps!

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StaLLZee said

I luv your screen name – Welcome to steepster

I will answer #3 – this is up to you – whatever you want to add or not add is your choice. Ooolong tea is fine alone or with anything you want to toss in

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