We want you to enjoy the perfect cup of tea every time. Perfect brewing requires measuring out the right amount of leaf, heating the water to the precise temperature, and steeping the leaf for the recommended time. By following a few simple guidelines, the leaf will release its character, nuance, and flavor for you to appreciate and enjoy.
White, green, oolong, black, and Puer tea, as well as tisanes, rooibos, and herbal infusions, have specific brewing methods recommended to bring out the best flavor of each. Follow these basic brewing guidelines but feel free to adjust to your taste.
- Weigh out 2.5-3 grams of tea per 8 oz of water.
- Choose an infuser that will allow the tea leaves to fully unfurl, which will bring out the true flavor of the tea.
- Bring freshly drawn cold water to a rolling boil. Do not let the water boil for an extended period of time. For green, white, and oolong tea, let the water cool to the appropriate temperature before pouring over the tea leaves.
- Pour the water over the leaves and set a timer to let the leaves infuse for the recommended time. Observe the size of the tea leaves. Small broken leaves will brew more quickly than larger whole leaf leaves.
- To stop the infusion process, remove the leaves from the water. Leaving the tea leaves in the water will make the tea very bitter. White tea is the exception to this.
- Brew Baihao Yin Zhen (Silver Needles) using two heaping teaspoons of tea to one cup of water at 175ºF for 5-6 minutes for the first infusion. It may be reinfused up to six times. Each infusion will impart its own unique character.
- Brew two teaspoons of Bai Mudan (White Peony) per 8 oz water. Pour water as soon as it steams. (175º-185º). Steep 3-5 minutes. Decant. For additional infusions, add fresh hot water and slightly increase steeping time.
- Delicate Japanese senchas are best infused in water at 175ºF for 1-2 minutes. Houjicha and Genmaicha may be infused using boiling water and steeped for 30 seconds.
- Gyokuro is best infused at 160ºF for 1-2 minutes. Use an instant-read thermometer for best results.
- Many Chinese pan fired teas, like Longjing, are best at 185ºF for 3 minutes.
- Large, bulkier leaves like LuAn Gua Pian may be steeped for 3-4 minutes.
- Tightly rolled or twisted oolong leaves require a brewing vessel that allows the leaves to unfurl freely. Often the leaves are rinsed for a few seconds before steeping. This tempers the leaf allowing it to effortlessly unfurl. Simply rinse the leaves in water just off the boil for a few seconds. Then infuse.
- Several infusions of oolong are possible. Resteep the leaves using the same water temperature, adding a minute to the original steep time for each subsequent infusion.
- Boiling water is needed to extract the flavor and character of most black teas. Smaller and broken leaf tea will infuse faster, usually 2-3 minutes. Larger-leaf tea will need to steep 3-5 minutes. Strain the leaves immediately to prevent bitterness.
- Often, the leaves may be resteeped a second time. First Flush Darjeeling requires a temperature off the boil as do many Chinese black teas with numerous golden buds.
Herbal Infusions & Tisanes
- Rooibos, chamomile, mint, hibiscus, spices, and fruit blends are considered herbal infusions, not tea because they are not made from camellia sinensis—the tea plant. With the exception of Yerba Mate, herbal infusions are naturally caffeine free.
- Extracting the flavors from herbs and fruits takes a bit of time. The general rule is to brew herbal infusions and tisanes for 5-10 minutes using boiling water.
- For delicious iced tea, make a tea concentrate using 5 grams of loose leaf tea per 8 oz of water using the recommended water temperature and time. Pour concentrate over a large glass of ice.