We all have that one friend or relative who is famed for their superior tea making abilities. We plead with them to make the tea because we just can’t get ours to taste quite the same. These people aren’t necessarily blessed with a magic touch that turns all tea into liquid gold. In fact, they are probably just avoiding these four common mistakes that many people make without even realising.
1. Your tea is too old
Because tea is dried, it doesn’t actually go “off” but over time the flavour will deteriorate, becoming less crisp and less intense. The greener your tea is, the faster it will deteriorate in quality over time. Additionally, tea bags are likely to give a worse flavour more quickly than loose leaf tea. In order to drastically increase the shelf life of your tea and maintain an optimal flavour, store it in a tea canister. This also prevents the tea from absorbing the flavours of foods stored in the same cupboard, which can also alter the flavour.
2. You’re over brewing it
Yes, we all know nothing is worse than a weak, watery under brewed cup of tea, but that doesn’t mean the longer you brew it the better it will taste. You may think that are making an immense effort to create the best possible tea by having the patience to seep it for a long time, but after the optimal brewing time has passed you are simply extracting bitterness from the leaves. Green tea should only be brewed for 1-3 minutes while black teas should be brewed for 3-5 minutes.
3. The water is too hot
While boiling water is fine for black teas, if you’re making a green tea, you need to use water that is around 75° C, otherwise your tea will taste bitter.
4. You’re using bad quality tea
Even the perfect tea brewing method cannot compensate for bad tea leaves. If you are buying your tea from a supermarket it is more likely to be processed and contain artificial flavours and other chemicals, as well as simply being of a poorer quality. If your tea retailer can’t tell you where the tea came from, how to prepare it and other important information, chances are the tea they’re selling isn’t very good. For premium quality teas, browse our site.