Does Cup Size Matter?


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Does Cup Size Matter?

Postby beforewisdom » Apr 3rd, '13, 11:13

I'm used to drinking tea in tall glass beer mugs.

Googling brewing directions for various green teas on the web it seems like the majority of green tea fans use very small pots and very small cups.

Assuming water/tea ratios are all the same is there any utility in very small vessels?
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Re: Does Cup Size Matter?

Postby BrooklynBrew » Apr 3rd, '13, 11:25

I think with quality loose tea, I find that I can get quite "drunk" on the stuff, so drinking mugs of it might be overkill (I think mellower/cheaper tea works better in casual/mug atmospheres). Also, it's good to go through several infusions to taste all the changes that take place and a small cup allows you to do that without getting all hopped up on caffeine.

I have a small gaiwan I love to use at night when I just want a very good tea and I don't want to stay up because of the caffeine buzz.
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Re: Does Cup Size Matter?

Postby Muadeeb » Apr 3rd, '13, 12:54

beforewisdom wrote:Assuming water/tea ratios are all the same ...


You would need to use a lot of leaf to keep the ratios the same in a beer mug. Not only will this increase the amount of caffeine, but the cost will skyrocket too. Tiny pot and cups give you all the flavor and experience while being kinder to your body and wallet.
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Re: Does Cup Size Matter?

Postby Evan Draper » Apr 3rd, '13, 13:00

I think you can assume that the water/tea ratio ISN'T the same.

Generous teabags are maybe 2 grams of leaf; stingy ones 1.5. One little gaiwan session might use 3 grams of green tea over 2-3 infusions; oolong or puerh might go 7-10 grams over more infusions.

There is a lot to it that you might not characterize as utility. But small cups do cool off faster, for better or worse, and larger brewing volumes tend to ruin some of the delicate flavor nuances.
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Re: Does Cup Size Matter?

Postby riccaicedo » Apr 6th, '13, 18:39

I think that when you have a small cup it forces you to pay more attention to each sip, as opposed to having a full mug of tea.
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Re: Does Cup Size Matter?

Postby yalokinh » Apr 7th, '13, 16:57

Evan Draper wrote:I think you can assume that the water/tea ratio ISN'T the same.

Generous teabags are maybe 2 grams of leaf; stingy ones 1.5. One little gaiwan session might use 3 grams of green tea over 2-3 infusions; oolong or puerh might go 7-10 grams over more infusions.

There is a lot to it that you might not characterize as utility. But small cups do cool off faster, for better or worse, and larger brewing volumes tend to ruin some of the delicate flavor nuances.


I find that I can make around 5-7 infusions with 3g of green tea in an 80-90ml gaiwan, so quite a bit.
with oolong 6-8, and with puer 7-9
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Re: Does Cup Size Matter?

Postby Chip » Apr 7th, '13, 17:47

Personally, cup size matters more based upon mood than much anything else, especially when drinking green teas. My mood can be influenced by tea related factors. But more times than not, mood will dictate cup size.

Mood will usually also dictate shape, style, color, etc.
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