Loose tea can be confusing. There isn’t a neat, pre-packaged paper sack of leaves, which you can simply drop into boiling water, and leave there. We understand. Therefore, we’ve gathered a list of every way which we can think of of infusing water with tea.
Are objectively terrible. Anyone who has ever owned them is aware of this fact. Firstly, they are round, which means that filling them involves holding one side of the contraption, while putting tea in it with the other hand. Then, you inevitably can’t close it while you crush most of the leaves in that hinge. Finally, your tea is steeped, and you need to take it out, and you either have to get a whole separate plate to put it on, or you have to just sort of let it make a horrible mess of whatever you put it on. Alternately, you can also let your tea oversteep, thereby ruining it, because you don’t want to deal with the hassle. Then, after you use it about three times, that hinge which was crushing the leaves breaks, and you have to get another tea ball. Or, instead, you can treat yourself to any of the infusers below, all of which are infinitely superior to tea balls.
These are your traditional, standard infusers. We carry them in two sizes. There’s a larger size, which comes with a lid. The lid keeps your tea warm, and then, when your tea is steeped, you can set the basket on the lid. It fits within that lip along the edge, thereby catching all the drips. The smaller model fits most sizes of mugs (I’ve used it with everything from those small japanese teacups to an actual bowl), and still comes with a small plate to set it on.
A rule of thumb for infusers in general is that you’re going to want the largest possible basket. Larger baskets allow quality leaves more space to unfurl, thereby allowing them to impart better flavor. This is another reason why tea balls are the worst. They tend to be small, and constrict the leaves.
You’re busy. You don’t have time for all of this whole steeping process. We understand. Therefore, we carry tumblers. Two of them, to be more exact. The first allows you to simply put your leaves into a small basket at the top, and then be done with it. Give it a few minutes to steep, and then drink it down below the bottom of the basket, to stop it from oversteeping.
If you believe that tea is not a thing which should be rushed, a tea pot might be a better choice for you. Many of our pots allow you to steep your tea right in the pot, by either having a strainer by their spout, or coming with their own basket.
If you’re that attached to using bags, we do have some which you can put your loose tea in. These are mostly meant for when you’re traveling, and don’t really have room for a proper infuser, or entire tea pot. Carry some in your purse along with a sample of tea or two, to avoid every having to drink inferior tea while you’re out and about ever again!
These follow the same principle as basket infusers, but are designed for steeping large quantities of tea. Fill them with leaves, screw the lid back on, and drop them into some large container full of water. It comes with a chain and a hook, so that you can get it back out again.
We pretty much never stop talking about these:
This is a very traditional way of brewing tea. We talk about them here.
Tell us about how you steep your tea in the comments below!