There are many methods for brewing tea. Taste, aroma, intensity, and even impact differ depending on how you brew a particular tea. The final infusion largely depends on such factors as the amount of tea used, the volume of the dishes, the material of the dishes, the temperature of the water, the infusion time and a huge variety of nuances that are revealed to us in the process of mastering the initial skills.
Of course, you can always just put some tea leaves in a glass, pour hot water and get a good drink after a while. But if you want to try high-quality organic tea, picked and made by hand, the price of which is much higher, the question is - how to brew such tea correctly so as not to spoil it and enjoy the drink as much as possible. We have collected for you the most correct methods of brewing tea in one article so that you can familiarize yourself with the general principles and decide which method is most suitable for you.
The methods that will be discussed are ceremonial, which in itself is a beautiful action that not only calms, but also guarantees a good mood for each participant.
There are several nuances that we would like to take out of the scope of a particular method, since they largely depend on the personal preferences of the brewer.
• In all methods, which will be discussed, it is recommended to use special dishes, which are usually small in size. The volume of such dishes varies from 100 to 300 ml. This volume allows you to use a small amount of tea and get a rich taste.
• The amount of tea used depends not only on the brewing method, but also on the personal preference of the brewer. For beginners, we usually recommend using about 3-7 g of dry tea (you can start with medium, 5 g) per 100 ml of water. Over time, everyone finds for themselves their own optimal ratio of the amount of tea to the volume of dishes.
• Very often a thermos for hot water is used to keep the temperature at the same level, as for some teas this is very important.
• We recommend using quality water for brewing tea. This will help you not to spoil the tea, but also to make it more delicious. The quality of the water and how it is prepared plays a huge role.
- translated from the Chinese language - "taste of tea". This is a kind of simplified Chinese tea ceremony that allows you to control many moments during the brewing process. This method is used with all large leaf tea, regardless of the country of origin. (But initially this is the Chinese method, for Chinese tea, so not all large-leaf teas are good when brewed like this!) As a rule, a small teapot (50-250 ml), small bowls (35-150 ml) and Cha Hai ("sea of tea "- an intermediate vessel into which the infusion is poured from a teapot so that all participants receive a same infusion). If you are alone, then Cha Hai is not required, but if you have guests, then this is a very necessary thing. There are many additional subjects of minor and major importance, but in this case we want to discuss only the essentials.
So, we have water, tea, kettle, and bowls. In order to enjoy the process as much as possible, 1) start by "getting to know" the tea leaf, enjoying its appearance and the aroma of dry tea leaves. 2) Next, the dishes are washed / warmed up, after which 3) tea is placed in a heated teapot. In fact, you can start brewing tea, but many people prefer after a while (30-60 seconds) 4) to appreciate the aroma of the "woken up" leaf, the aroma of which has begun to unfold. First of all, 5) rinse the tea, fill it with water and drain it immediately. Now, we have washed the tea leaves and prepared them for brewing. (This process is similar to how we wash the food before we eat or cook it!) The very moment 6) Enjoy the aroma of the washed tea leaves before starting to brew the tea. (The aroma of the tea leaves is constantly changing during the ceremony, and this process is very interesting to watch. In addition, we inhale essential oils, which in itself has an aromatherapy effect, which is also very useful.) Then you just 7) fill the tea leaves with water and either 8) pour into bowls, or pour into Cha Hai and then pour into bowls.
The longer you infuse the tea leaves in the teapot, the richer the infusion you get! Moreover, different teas are brewed at different speeds. It is very difficult to determine the average infusion time, since each tea requires a separate approach. We recommend starting by steeping the tea leaf in the teapot for about 10 seconds. This way you will be able to pour and drain the tea many times. This amount also depends on the particular tea, but a good tea should withstand a minimum of 7 infusions.
This is how the Pin Cha method looks like, the meaning of which you can enjoy drink tea thoughtfully, without rushing. If you devote a small amount of time to this process, then you will begin to better understand tea and you will definitely feel the benefits of such tea drinking. There are new emotions, natural tastes and aromas. All this calms and brings peace and harmony into our life.
!!! By the way, we highly recommend reading a short but very interesting article on the chemical composition of tea leaves, where we have collected all the useful properties of the Camellia Sinensis plant! BIOCHEMISTRY OF TEA LEAF. ALL ABOUT THE BENEFICIAL PROPERTIES OF TEA. !!!
GONG FU CHA
- from the Chinese language can be translated as - "the highest skill of brewing tea." This is how the tea ceremony is called in the China. (This term is also used to refer to "tea of the highest mastery.") In many ways, this brewing method is similar to Pin Cha, but there are some nuances. Typically, the hallmarks of Gong Fu Cha are preparing water over a fire in front of guests, using Yixing teapots and tea pairs. Since this ceremony, the atmosphere is expected to be calm, quiet and the person brewing tea will be the center of attention. Phone calls and other distractions are not encouraged during the ceremony. It is also very important to understand that Gong Fu Cha is the enjoyment of tea as a self-sufficient product that does not need a snack.
To begin with, it is necessary 1) to separate the space where the tea action will take place, so that the participants feel the seriousness of this event. Next, you need to 2) equip the place where the tea will be brewed. It can be a small tablecloth or Cha Ban (tea board). After the place is prepared, you can 3) lay out the items needed for the tea ceremony. The most necessary: • a source of fire, • a kettle for boiling water, • a kettle or Gaiwan for brewing tea, • Cha He (dishes for "acquaintance" with dry tea), • Cha Hai, • tea tools, • bowls and / or tea pairs , • stands for bowls and • a container for draining excess water. Also, during the tea ceremony, a small vase of flowers (for beauty) and ChaChun ("tea pets") are often used. You can play calm music to create the desired atmosphere. For simplicity, you can prepare and arrange all this in advance, but "according to Feng Shui" you need to start the ceremony with this.
After everything is ready, you can 4) start boiling water. While preparing the water, you can 5) familiarize yourself with the dry tea leaf. As soon as the water has reached a hot state, 6) rinse / warm up the dishes. Then 7) put the tea in a heated teapot and after a while 8) enjoy the aroma of a heated tea leaf. Next 9) fill the tea leaves with water and drain immediately. As in the Pin Cha method, the first infusion is not drunk! Now is the time 10) to enjoy the scent of the washed tea leaf. Finally, you can 11) start brewing tea by brewing it several times. As with Pin Cha, we recommend starting with 10 seconds and increasing or decreasing the infusion time if desired. Each of the participants should receive the same amount of tea, the same degree of saturation, which is convenient to control through the use of Cha Hai.
Tea pair bring to the tea action the moment of enjoying the aroma of tea infusion, as well as the aroma of "empty cup", which is difficult to do with simple bowls. The pair of tea consists of Wen Xiang Bei (tall cup for tasting the aroma) and Pin Min Bei (low bowl for tasting the infusion). First 12) the infusion is poured into Wen Xiang Bei, and Pin Ming Bei is placed on top to make a kind of "mushroom". 13) After that, this whole structure must be turned upside down. 14) Now you can lift Wen Xiang Bei and enjoy the aroma of the infusion, which changes as it dries. Observing these changes is a very important part of the tea ceremony. Do not forget to sniff this bowl, the aroma in it intoxicates no less than the infusion itself. Tea is drunk in small sips in order to thoughtfully enjoy its taste. In this way, we enjoy tea, following the same principles as during Pin Cha.
At the end of Gong Fu Cha, be sure to "say goodbye" to tea, appreciating its opened tea leaves and the aroma of "drunk" tea leaves.
It is common to use this method with highly fermented oolong teas, but practice shows that both fresh green and red teas are also very good in tea pairs. To see how it all looks in practice, we suggest you go to any oolong from our range and watch a video showing the whole process. If you turn on the sound, the voice-over will tell you in detail what to do.
- can be translated from Japanese as - "Sencha way". This method is used to brew Japanese tea. The infusion time can vary from 20 to 120 seconds (in some cases even longer). The amount of tea used also varies from 2 to 7 g (on average 5g) per 120-200 ml and depends on the preferences of the brewer. Another nuance is that tea is not washed in Japan. The first infusion is drunk and is considered the most useful and delicious. The temperature of the brewing water depends on the tea, and can vary from 50 to 100 degrees Celsius. Most are green leg tea is brewed at 50-75 degrees Celsius. For more information on which temperature to use, see each tea in the "Recommended Brewing Method" tab.
Now that we know what we are dealing with, we can prepare water at the right temperature and start brewing tea. Using the Sencha Do method and infusing the tea for 20-60 seconds, the tea can be brewed many times, depending on the particular tea.
The brewing process is as follows. 1) We wash / warm up the dishes. 2) Put the tea leaf in the teapot. 3) Pour the water into bowls and when the water in them cools down to the desired temperature, 4) pour the tea leaf. After the required amount of time 5) pour back into the bowls in small portions so that all participants in the ceremony receive a lonely infused infusion. It is very important to drain every last drop so that the tea in the kettle does not continue to brew.
Japanese tea is beautiful and unique. We recommend that you follow the recommendations that you will find in the "Recommended brewing method" tab for each particular tea. This guarantees a tasty, pleasant drink, with minimal bitterness and astringency.
- a ceremonial method, popularly referred to as "cooking on an open fire." The name comes from the name of the Chinese poet and writer of the Tang Dynasty, the author of the first-ever treatise on tea "Tea Canon". This method allows you to reveal the maximum potential of the tea leaf and get a rich, deep and multifaceted taste.
In this method, great importance is attached to the preparation of water. We recommend using a glass teapot with a volume of 1000-2000 ml. Participants in the tea event enjoy not only the activities of the tea brewer, but also the boiling stages of the water. Sounds of water, steam, warmth and light of fire, all this soothes and plunges into states of harmony, making you forget about the vanity of a gray day.
While the water is being prepared, the participants in the ceremony 1) get acquainted with the dry tea leaf, evaluating its appearance and aroma. After that, you need to 2) rinse the tea, for which it is best to use Gaiwan. When the water reaches a certain temperature (about 65-75 degrees Celsius), listening, you can catch the moment of the first "crackle". At this point, it is necessary to 3) drain about 200 ml of water into a separate container, for example Cha Hai. When the water begins to boil and there are columns of bubbles in the water, the so-called "pearl threads", 4) it is necessary to gently spin the water in a circle using tongs, which are usually present in any set of tea tools. Immediately after the water is untwisted, it is necessary 5) pour 200 ml of warm water, which we poured earlier, into the center of the formed funnel. Literally in a minute, the water will begin to boil again and by this time you need to be ready to pour tea. 6) Unscrew the water again, and if everything is done correctly, then very soon a "dragon's tail" will appear inside the kettle. This is the very moment when 7) you need to pour the washed tea leaves into the teapot. Then it is worth waiting for about 20-30 seconds until it boils completely, after which 8) remove the kettle from the heat and cover with a lid.
Depending on the tea, its quantity and the volume of the teapot, the infusion process can last from 20 to 90 minutes. The tea infusion will be ready when all the tea leaves have sunk to the bottom. At this time, you can either brew another tea using a different method, or do other things, from time to time glancing at the infusion.
Lu Yu's method is not as simple as it sounds, but with proper attention and concentration, it can make a delicious tea. This is how tea leaves were brewed over 1000 years ago. This is a theme for a separate topic. We will happily return to this topic in the future and write it out in more detail. Almost all types of tea can be brewed using this method.
We hope we managed to describe this topic in an accessible, understandable language. As we said in a very beginning, there are a huge number of nuances that emerge as we gain experience. At this stage, we wanted to describe the most necessary and not overload you with information. We are happy for you, because if you are reading these lines, most likely you are at the beginning of an exciting path, which in the east is called the "Tea Way." Tea unites and gives us a great time, improving our physical and mental health.
P.S. The use of special teaware made of special materials makes the process of brewing tea more interesting, convenient, beautiful, and most importantly, it better reveals the taste and aroma of tea. In our assortment of teaware, you will find teapots and tea sets made from very high quality, and most importantly, safe materials, by some of the best craftsmen in China, Japan and other countries. We test each item for its functionality and guarantee that, if handled correctly, they will last you a very long time.
More details about what kind of dishes for tea ceremonies are and what are their features can be found in our article - More details about tea ware!
We also recommend that you read our article - 5 Key Aspects in Tea Evaluation - on how to properly evaluate tea!