How do you store your tea?


Owes its flavors to oxidation levels between green & black tea.

How do you store your tea?

Postby ndw76 » Feb 5th, '11, 23:27

When ever I have walked past a shop selling any type of oolong I have felt an irresistible desire to buy. This has led to me running out of storage containers. Usually the tea I buy just comes in a foil bag, so this can not be used to store the tea. It is not air tight and looks unsightly.

One solution I have found is to wash and re-use a plastic canister that used to hold vitamin C tablets. I cut off the labels from from the foil package and taped them to the the outside of the canister so I can remember which tea is which.

But I have found a problem with the one plastic canister I was using. The tea I was storing in a plastic canister now has a distinctive plastic smell to it. This mostly goes after washing the leaves, but still it is not desirable.

It looks like I might have to stop being so tight assed and shell out for some better canisters. One option I have is a cardboard tube canister, but I'm not sure if the cardboard would be treated with any chemicals that might taint the tea. Another option is wooden canisters, but they are big and unsightly, atleast the ones I have seen are. I was hoping to find some porcelain or clay canisters locally, but I just have to keep looking.

So what do you use to store your tea? What would you recommend ?
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby Chip » Feb 7th, '11, 00:51

Japanese double lidded canisters when I really want airtight ...
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby IPT » Feb 7th, '11, 01:10

The best thing I have found for storing tea, if you don't have a vacuum sealer, is paint cans. I don't mean used ones, but brand new paint cans. They seal almost air tight and are very sturdy and stack well. It's also easy to apply labels to them. Most painter supply places will have unused ones for sale. They come in different sizes, so you don't have to get the gallon size. They are also reusable.

I would highly recommend staying away from cardboard because it has an odor and also, it absorbs moisture like a sponge.
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby tingjunkie » Feb 7th, '11, 01:43

Don't knock the foil bags for storage. I just participated in a head to head tasting of 2009 Tie Luo Han VS. the same TLH from 2006 which had been kept in the foil bag for the 4-5 years. The 2006 had aged amazingly well and had no off aromas I could detect. Maybe not the best choice for a decade+ of aging, but for shorter periods it works just fine.

Now the visual appeal... that's a different story. :wink:
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby brad4419 » Feb 7th, '11, 12:48

Chip wrote:Japanese double lidded canisters when I really want airtight ...


+1

These are my favorite, http://www.o-cha.com/green-tea/green-tea-canister.html

I wonder who told me about these :wink:
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby Chip » Feb 7th, '11, 13:10

brad4419 wrote:
Chip wrote:Japanese double lidded canisters when I really want airtight ...


+1

These are my favorite, http://www.o-cha.com/green-tea/green-tea-canister.html

I wonder who told me about these :wink:

Yeah, I wonder too ... :mrgreen: You can use those for time capsule tea, put it in and open it in 100 years.

Seriously though, those are 100 seamless too, and the vacuum when opening is pretty intense. :idea: :!: :mrgreen:
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby teaisme » Feb 7th, '11, 17:30

tingjunkie wrote:Don't knock the foil bags for storage


+1 esp for oolongs and blacks

As long as they are of decent material you really don't need to fret, most are decent enough to not impart as much odor to your tea leaves vs other forms of metal/plastic storage

those ocha canisters do seem real nice though

To eliminate any foil bag storage tastes/smells (if you can detect any), you can just leave a little of your tea out in a cup (make sure environment is neutral of strong odors, not over dry, or too humid etc) a day or two before you brew it
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby tenuki » Feb 8th, '11, 03:19

For green oolongs I store in sealed mylar bags (airtight) with oxygen absorber packets and food grade dececant packets. I also use a nice porcelain jar that I seal (wax) if I want to age an oolong. For high fired teas that need a while to mellow I have a couple of jars that seal ok but aren't airtight - sometimes I just put the bag it came with in the jar depending on the bag. really depends on the tea. I've even been known to put roasted teas that need mellowing in a yixing lidded mug I got as a gift - and it works magic. I'm fortunate enough to have as a friend a talented ceramic artist that works on trade so sometimes I get something custom made for a particular tea. ;)

For blacks I just use some double lidded tins I have. seems to work fine. I also keep the tins my favorite matcha comes in (screw on top with a seal on the lid, but small and lightweight) for samples, etc.
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby debunix » Feb 8th, '11, 03:51

I store them in what they came in, mostly, finding that the zip-lock style pouches store compactly. I have a few nicer metal tins, but they sit empty as often as not. Teas that come in a non-resealable pouch get stuff into a ziploc.

Puerh cakes or bricks go into cloth bags, because the paper wraps aren't really sturdy enough, and I want them to have a chance to breathe.
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby Oni » Feb 8th, '11, 03:53

Level 10 magic shield, I often cast a lighting ward on them, so nobody can touch it. They levitate inside my room.
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby tenuki » Feb 8th, '11, 03:54

Oni wrote:Level 10 magic shield, I often cast a lighting ward on them, so nobody can touch it. They levitate inside my room.


:shock:
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby Herb_Master » Feb 8th, '11, 07:22

Oni wrote:Level 10 magic shield, I often cast a lighting ward on them, so nobody can touch it. They levitate inside my room.


I have only got the level 8 shield, is it worth paying the extra for a level 10?
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby Chih Ting » Feb 10th, '11, 12:47

The most important thing of storage the tea well is to control their water content, because the tea is very easily absorbed moisture and odor in the air and that is the most common reason to make the tea deterioration. Therefore, the ideal tea package will be the opaque plastic bags, metal cans, paper cans or aluminum foil vacuum bags. In general, it is no problem to storage tea over two years. As long as there is not some musty, some people even carve the special vintage flavor of tea. :D
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Re: How do you store your tea?

Postby hopeofdawn » Feb 10th, '11, 12:57

For me, the phrase 'out of sight, out of mind' definitely applies--I know myself well enough to know that if I can't see the tea, I'll forget I have it! So I store mine in the foil bags, inside glass air seal jars--I tend to buy smaller bags of tea, so it works pretty well at keeping light/air/moisture out.
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