New to teas, need advice


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New to teas, need advice

Postby Snow on Cedar » Dec 27th, '05, 00:13

Hi, I am relatively new to the world of tea. I think what I enjoy most about tea is not the taste or scent, but the sense of ceremony involved in making and drinking it. It is methodical, like the steps to a dance. Do I sound a little loopy? I hope not, just trying to explain that tea is like mental exersize to me...anyone else?

Now to my question I suppose! I've read all about water types, and temperatures to steep etc...But it seems no matter how careful I am I taste bitterness? Or sometimes I get the cup of colored (tasteless) hot water?

Please recommend teas that are sweet without sweetener, and fruity tasting...I think I like those best. I do not like the harsh taste of black teas.
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Postby klemptor » Dec 27th, '05, 09:37

Your best bet would be white tea. Try Adagio's Silver Needle. Brew at 180 degrees Fahrenheit for seven minutes. You can also reinfuse - the second infusion may suit you better than the first.
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Reinfusions

Postby Snow on Cedar » Dec 28th, '05, 00:02

Does this mean using the leaves twice for the same cup or just reusing them in general?
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Postby klemptor » Dec 28th, '05, 10:12

"Second infusion" indicates that you've infused them once, enjoyed that cup of tea, and are now reinfusing them for a second time. It's reusing the leaves in general, not for the same cup of tea.
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reinfusing

Postby Snow on Cedar » Dec 28th, '05, 14:12

Thanks I thought so, but wasn't sure. Is the tea weaker on the second infusion?
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Postby klemptor » Dec 28th, '05, 14:30

I wouldn't call it "weaker" - I'd call it "more mellow." But that's why it doesn't work well with black tea - black tea is meant to be stronger.
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Reinfusing

Postby Snow on Cedar » Dec 28th, '05, 18:09

Ok thanks, I'll give it a try then.
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Re: New to teas, need advice

Postby Mocha Wheels » Aug 27th, '07, 19:16

Snow on Cedar wrote:Hi, I am relatively new to the world of tea. I think what I enjoy most about tea is not the taste or scent, but the sense of ceremony involved in making and drinking it. It is methodical, like the steps to a dance. Do I sound a little loopy? I hope not, just trying to explain that tea is like mental exersize to me...anyone else?

Now to my question I suppose! I've read all about water types, and temperatures to steep etc...But it seems no matter how careful I am I taste bitterness? Or sometimes I get the cup of colored (tasteless) hot water?

Please recommend teas that are sweet without sweetener, and fruity tasting...I think I like those best. I do not like the harsh taste of black teas.


try white pear or black rhubarb... i wish there was a white rhubarb... i'm not a fruity tea drinker and i like both of them
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Postby Mocha Wheels » Aug 27th, '07, 19:18

klemptor wrote:I wouldn't call it "weaker" - I'd call it "more mellow." But that's why it doesn't work well with black tea - black tea is meant to be stronger.


you can also try the method i use... make all your cups of tea (infusions) at once, pouring them into a pitcher. that way each cup is the average infusion strength.
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Postby Space Samurai » Aug 27th, '07, 19:44

Mocha Wheels wrote:you can also try the method i use... make all your cups of tea (infusions) at once, pouring them into a pitcher. that way each cup is the average infusion strength.


but wouldn't the key word in that be "average?"
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Postby ABx » Aug 27th, '07, 19:51

Indeed, one would be diluting the finer points of the tea to a degree that they would likely become imperceptible. Part of the enjoyment of the tea is to discover how it changes with each cup. Some teas will change dramatically with each infusion.

I would say that if you're getting bitter teas, then the chances are that you're either using too much leaf or steeping too long, although some teas are more bitter than others. I would try scaling both down just a little at a time. With some experimentation I am sure you will find the best parameters for the tea.
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Postby Mocha Wheels » Aug 27th, '07, 19:52

spacesamurai wrote:
Mocha Wheels wrote:you can also try the method i use... make all your cups of tea (infusions) at once, pouring them into a pitcher. that way each cup is the average infusion strength.


but wouldn't the key word in that be "average?"


maybe median is a better word
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Postby scruffmcgruff » Aug 27th, '07, 20:07

Well, unless it magically multiplies the middle infusion, average is a better word.
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Postby Mocha Wheels » Aug 27th, '07, 20:11

scruffmcgruff wrote:Well, unless it magically multiplies the middle infusion, average is a better word.


true i was just trying to find a word that made it sound like it wasn't inferior. i realize my method isn't for everyone, but getting the most out of my tea leaves is the only way i can afford to drink loose leaf tea daily and i just don't have the motivation to drink plain water so this works for me.
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Postby ABx » Aug 27th, '07, 20:33

You might want to check out an Asian grocer in your area, there are quite likely some decent teas in the price range you require that would offer more benefit and better taste. It's certainly a better option than buying a better grade tea and intentionally making an inferior infusion (as detailed in my post above).
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