5 steps to better loose leaf tea: by that, we mean a better cup of tea for you. Everyone likes their tea slightly different and one of the joys of loose leaf tea is that there are endless possibilities! Often people think loose leaf tea is complicated but so long as you follow a few simple guidelines you can’t go far wrong.
Let’s face it, your tea is flavoured water. If you don’t start with good water, you won’t get good tea! Use freshly drawn or filtered tap water where possible. Some may say that spring water is ideal but these days we have to consider the environmental impact of our daily cuppa. Mineral water is too hard and will leave a metallic taste in your brew. Distilled water is too soft and will leave your tea flat. You are looking for a PH of 7. If you need to filter your water it is best to use freshly filtered water that has not been standing around. Do not use water that you have reboiled. Please do not microwave your water, this removes all the oxygen from the water and will leave you a very flat-tasting brew.
Different teas require different temperature water. If you are new to drinking loose leaf tea, or just new to that type of tea, a good place to start is the instructions on the packet. We include a simple amount/temp/time infographic on all of our teas. You can then experiment until you get it right for you! If in doubt, use cooler water, many teas can be damaged by water that is too hot, but few are hurt by the water being a few degrees too cold (I can feel my grandmother staring at me).
Boiling water and letting it cool will dramatically reduce the amount of oxygen in the water and affect the taste of the tea. Where possible take the water temperature up to, not down to. We have temperature adjustable kettles here, which can be bought cheaply from Amazon. Why is this so important? If you put boiling water on sencha it will taste bitter and horrible, no matter how good the tea was. Continue reading