If you speak to any two different tea drinkers, they’ll likely have their own special way of perfecting their cup of tea. Tea is made in many different ways around the world, and within each of these regions, there are thousands of people who have a unique way of brewing their tea each day.
Although everyone has a unique spin on tea making, there’s actually the perfect temperature for making a cup of tea. However, this one temperature isn’t just ideal for all types of tea, as every different leaf and variety have their own perfect level as well. If you thought that drinking tea was a simple process, you might be surprised to know just how many intricate parts there are to it.
In addition to the water temperature, there are a few other things you need to ensure before you can create the perfect cup of tea. The leaves you use, the water you use, and even what you serve it in, all of these can effect what your cup of tea tastes like. However, to truly get the best flavors and use out of your tea bags and leaves, the water temperature is most important.
When you make a cup of tea, the aim is to allow the water to seep into the tea bags or leaves and bring out the flavors and nutrients. The amino acids which give the tea its flavor will dissolve at lower temperatures that tannin, which can have a bitter taste, which means tea brewed at the boiling point will often be less sweet.
Although many people make cups of tea with boiling water, this is actually usually too hot. When you use boiling water it can add bitterness to the tea, except in the case of cheap industrial tea where the subtle flavors of leaf tea are absent anyway. You should be aiming to stop the kettle before it reaches boiling point to ensure you get the best temperature.
With the perfect temperature of water for your loose tea or bag, you’ll be able to capture flavors you’ve likely never tasted before in a cup of tea. The delicate and subtle flavors that tea is so famous for will become increasingly evident when you achieve the ideal temperature and refrain from making your bags and teas in boiling water.
Contrary to popular belief, there’s no one set temperature that’s going to work for all tea blends and varieties. When you’re working with good leaf tea, you should have the water below boiling to get it at the perfect amount. You can achieve this by stopping the kettle before it boils which will be indicated by small bubbles forming or having it reach boiling and then allowing it to cool.
When you’re drinking white and green teas, the best temperature is around 70°c. This is the lowest of all of the teas due to the gentle flavors that this drink should be enjoyed at. For black and oolong tea, you can go a little higher at around 85°c, however, if you’re drinking chamomile it should be 90°c.
For those who enjoy herbal infusions, whether it’s in a tea bag or loose leaves, you can use boiling water for this. However, if you’re drinking any of the other varieties and don’t trust yourself to achieve the correct temperature you can get a controller kettle or use a thermometer to gauge the water. The benefits of having your tea brewed at the perfect temperature will be obvious and immediate.
Along with the most obvious benefit of a better tasting tea, there are many ways you can benefit from the perfectly brewed cup. For many people, a few cups a day is the standard amount and because it’s not as caffeinated as coffee you can drink a little more without feeling too stimulated.
Tea has many medicinal purposes that allow it to extend beyond just a morning drink, but you need to ensure you’re brewing it correctly to get all that is has to offer. Just by following the recommended brewing temperature for your water and tea, you can get all of this and more from your next cup of tea, and it will taste exactly as it was intended as well.
If you’re someone who places a lot of importance on getting the ideal cup of tea, it’s about time you started taking the water temperature seriously. With just this one small change, you will notice an immediate improvement in the taste of your tea, and your body will receive a whole new range of benefits as well.
Whether you’re looking to invest in a temperature controlled kettle or achieve the ideal temperature manually, there’s no reason to not follow these guidelines for brewing the perfect cup of tea. Although we all have different ways we like to enjoy our tea, this is one set of rules that should be adhered to in order to get the maximum benefits and enjoyment from your daily cups of tea.