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Making the perfect cup of tea

BunksBunks Australia Veteran

I remember it vividly.....a small "greasy spoon" in London in 2007.

The perfect cup of tea:

  1. Strong
  2. Hot
  3. Milky

I've never tasted anything like it since but I've decided I want to try and re-create it. I have:

  1. A teapot

Perhaps the learned folk on here can give me some tips on what else I need and the method required?

Thanks in advance.

Comments

  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    I can teach you a wicked chai tea if you're interested...

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    One thing at a time @Kundo ....thanks though =)

    Kundo
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    .. when I say, "fill the pot ", it does of course depend on how big your pot is... I once managed to get my hands on a Yorkshire railway ceramic teapot that made 20 cups....

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    Wow!! Thanks @federica......will give it a try.

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    P.S. I believe I can get my hands on Yorkshire tea at the supermarket.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Yorkshire tea = 4 minute brew, not 5. I don't know what they put in that stuff, but after 5 minutes, the spoon stands up on its own....

    BunksKundo
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    WOOLWORTHS?!? Aaaah, nostalgia moment.... "That's the wonder of Woolies, good ol'
    Woolies!"

  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    What you probably had is builders tea
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Builder%27s_tea

    The important things @federica has mentioned.

    ... some terrifying non teas that I have had:

    • In France, they provide 'english tea' with a long string attached to a tea bag, dunk it in tepid water so it goes a brownish tinge and then drink it as if brown water is acceptable. We used to go to war with them for less ...
    • In Africa, tinned cream or milk is used. Wot no cows?
    • Poles and Russians add lemon to glass surrounded by metal using the brown tinge liquid of the French. This is the reason Communism fell in Eastern Europe.
    • Indians boil and curry their tea and you get two sugars wether you like it or not.
    • Americans don't drink tea because not paying taxes is part of the constitution

    OK that is enough evil for today >:)

    Back to the good advice o:)

    Good luck @Bunks

    Bunksfedericaadamcrossley
  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    @federica said:
    WOOLWORTHS?!? Aaaah, nostalgia moment.... "That's the wonder of Woolies, good ol'
    Woolies!"

    Hehe! It used to be Safeway in Victoria but Woolworths everywhere else (same supermarket) so we finally caved and joined the herd.......

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    Thanks @lobster - I failed to mention that I'd lived in the USA for about 6 months prior to having "that" cup of tea. May have been a factor in why I enjoyed it so much!! =)

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited May 23

    Safeway was bought out by Morrisons, in the UK, and Woolworths disappeared from our High Streets and became 'Very'.... Everything changes, yet everything stays the same...

    Bunks
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    (Let me know how the tea goes... )

    Bunks
  • adamcrossleyadamcrossley Veteran
    edited May 23

    I saw this and thought, Finally a thread I can bring some expertise to! And then I read @federica’s post and it covers everything. Long live Yorkshire Tea!

    federicaKeromeBunks
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    The Great British tradition! Great British Minds think alike - !

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    Yes, @federica covered the main points... other teas which I have enjoyed: Twinings Earl Grey or Breakfast, Clipper Earl Grey or Breakfast, Lipton Yellow Label. For me, a good standard tea has to have a robust tea flavour, none of this delicate herbal stuff.

    federica
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    One of the best teas on the market - and I watched 2 different programmes with 2 separate taste tests - is J Sainsbury's own-brand red box tea. And it really, really is very good. Refreshing and satisfying.

    Bunks
  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited May 23

    Dear Friends of the Zen beverage,

    The tea gods are angry with me after I disrespected the dharma ambrosia ...
    Our kettle went on strike. The light comes on but no water is boiled. O.o

    As recompense ...
    https://japanaibunka.wordpress.com/2018/06/01/bodhidharmas-eyelids-and-the-origins-of-tea/

    Here is a taoist making healing tea brewing noises ...

    Long Live HH Daily Chai <3

  • JeffreyJeffrey Veteran
    edited May 23

    I have found a good additive to tea can be lemon juice. I can't remember exactly but for awhile I was really into tea and I enjoyed that. This would be for tea without milk. I think I used lemon flavored tea and also added fresh lemon.

    I usually have coffee for mornings now and am over my tea kick. But for evenings instead of coffee I will have green tea just made with hot water steeping a tea bag in a coffee mug because I can't be bothered to get a tea pot out. I like tea for evenings because it is a lighter/gentler stimulant because coffee has more stimulants in it than just caffeine. I believe for green tea you're supposed to have a little cooler water than black tea and steep a little shorter. It's good for eye nutrition since the anti-oxidant gets destroyed mostly in black tea whereas green and white tea the anti-oxidant for eye health is preserved.

    Bunks
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    There is a skill to brewing green tea that I have never mastered and probably never will... If I under-brew it, it is watery and tasteless. If I over-brew it, it is strong and metallic, and thoroughly unpleasant, unless I add enough sugar to drown the lingering flavour... It's the middle level of brewing that escapes me,and I've never really got it quite right.

    I gave up long ago. I'm sticking to my nice British cuppa, and the odd caffe latte as made by my genuine Eye-Talian Lavazza percolator!

    Bunks
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @Bunks also check out T2 if you get a chance.

    Bunks
  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited May 24

    Dear Friends of the Buddha Brew,

    Here is how Manjushri taught me to bro tea ... (must be shared)
    https://yinyana.tumblr.com/post/39218263982/yinyana-tea-infusion

    One ingredient was not mentioned (after all this is an alchemical blend)
    One 'spike' from a star anise. The rest is given to your Buddha to hold. Now you know the importance of mudra ...

    OM YA HA HUM

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    This is one of the easier rasayana teas ... as it only takes 6 hours to make.

    Oh good. I can watch the entire series of 'Poirot' while I wait for it to brew...!

    lobsterKundo
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    Making the perfect cup of tea

    At this present moment in time I am off caffeine, so no more Oolong and the likes for a while....

    However once you find the type of tea that suits your taste buds, use a clay teapot, the slightly porous clay will absorb the natural oils in the tea and, over time, take on the flavor of the tea brewed in the pot.

    Bunkslobster
  • LincLinc Community Instigator Detroit Moderator
    edited May 26

    After making thousands of cups, I've discovered that a strong desire for a good cup of tea and having skipped tea for a number of days will make the same old good tea extraordinary.

    By the same token, the sixth cup of tea, no matter how well prepared, is never quite as good as the first one.

    KeromelobsterBunksperson
  • LincLinc Community Instigator Detroit Moderator

    My current favorite is Harney & Sons: Scottish Morn. It comes in larger sachets that let the tea circulate very nicely. It's really nothing fancy to prepare: Boil the water, steep 3-4 minutes, add milk to your taste. The type of milk (I suggest 2% or whole) affects the taste quite a bit. So too does filtering your water before it goes in the teapot, and descaling your teapot with a vinegar soak occasionally.

    Harney & Sons is a bit dear price-wise for the amount of tea I drink, so my later cups are Twinings (Irish/English Breakfasts, English Afternoon, Orange Pekoe Ceylon, and Prince of Wales). Tetley (in the US you need the "British Blend") is the most cost-effective cuppa.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    And I think the whole question of milk hasn’t been properly addressed. I know people who would say milk ruins a good cuppa, while others would say without it it lacks something. Then there is the question of full-fat milk vs semi-skimmed. And how many sugars to a mug. It all seems to be highly personal.

    Bunks
  • LincLinc Community Instigator Detroit Moderator

    @Kerome said:
    And I think the whole question of milk hasn’t been properly addressed. I know people who would say milk ruins a good cuppa, while others would say without it it lacks something. Then there is the question of full-fat milk vs semi-skimmed. And how many sugars to a mug. It all seems to be highly personal.

    Quite so. I started my tea drinking with sugar and cut it because I disliked the coating it created in my mouth after several cups. Now I think it's sickeningly sweet to add any.

    I put milk in any black tea that isn't Darjeeling (I never drink flavored teas, I deeply dislike them). The amount of milk and type varies with my mood (I oddly equate more milk with a bit more decadence, like it's making my tea a dessert).

    I love a tea latte (half breakfast tea brewed with 2 teabags, half foamed milk). Once I discovered I could order them at Starbucks, I became a coffeeshop fan.

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    Sorry @Linc but tea and Starbucks should not be uttered in the same sentence surely! ?

    Unless something has changed in the 12 years since I lived there.

    The tea I was served there was virtually undrinkable

    Kundolobster
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Each to their own...

    When I make tea in a mug, I add the milk after I've brewed the tea.
    When I make tea in a pot, I put the milk into the cup first...

    And please - let's not forget the correct way to hold the vessel, shall we?

    More tea, Vicar....?

    Bunkslobster
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    OMG!!! I'm English faints

    :awesome:

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited May 26

    Another string to your bow... !

    Apparently, I', 'Royalty'.

    Like, you guys didn't already suspect it....

    KundoBunks
  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    Just an update, I am still in the process of getting my ducks (tea bags?) in a row with regard to everything I need for this to happen.....watch this space!

    There will be photos.......

    KundolobsterShoshin
  • LincLinc Community Instigator Detroit Moderator
    edited May 27

    @Bunks said:
    Sorry @Linc but tea and Starbucks should not be uttered in the same sentence surely! ?

    Unless something has changed in the 12 years since I lived there.

    The tea I was served there was virtually undrinkable

    It may have. I'm only a recent convert (last... 4 years?) and they use Teavana tea now which isn't amazing but it's really not bad at all.

    The adventure of trying to explain a tea latte to a barista who's never heard of it can be very challenging, nevermind they will assume you want 3 pumps of awful sweetener. "English Breakfast tea latte, no sweetener" can go wrong more ways than you'd ever imagine. A full 10% of the time I get Earl Grey instead, which tastes like poison to me. It shocks me so badly every time I can't figure out what's wrong with it for a few seconds. :p

    Bunksfederica
  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited May 27

    @federica said:
    There is a skill to brewing green tea that I have never mastered and probably never will

    try an impure blend
    green tea with jasmine
    put almost boiling water in cup (Do not pre warm cup)
    show the water the teabag and assure her she can bathe in a minute or two
    add bag, one stir, sit for two/three minutes

    if really finicky throw first brew away
    and repeat with used bag

    You are not brewing but wafting jasmin fragrance through water
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vietnamese_lotus_tea

    The best lotus tea I have drunk just uses a tiny pinch, maybe five leaves max for a pot.

    It is subtle

    ... and now back to stronger stuff ...

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @Linc said:

    @Bunks said:
    Sorry @Linc but tea and Starbucks should not be uttered in the same sentence surely! ?

    Unless something has changed in the 12 years since I lived there.

    The tea I was served there was virtually undrinkable

    It may have. I'm only a recent convert (last... 4 years?) and they use Teavana tea now which isn't amazing but it's really not bad at all.

    The adventure of trying to explain a tea latte to a barista who's never heard of it can be very challenging, nevermind they will assume you want 3 pumps of awful sweetener. "English Breakfast tea latte, no sweetener" can go wrong more ways than you'd ever imagine. A full 10% of the time I get Earl Grey instead, which tastes like poison to me. It shocks me so badly every time I can't figure out what's wrong with it for a few seconds. :p

    "Hey here's an idea - let's take a perfectly good drink and fuck it up to Hell!"

    Jeez, you Americans just can't let that little Boston incident go, can you...!?

    lobsterBunksKundo
  • LincLinc Community Instigator Detroit Moderator
    edited May 27

    Think of it like improving a good frothy milk with a bit of tea rather than some cocoa. :awesome:

  • LincLinc Community Instigator Detroit Moderator

    Or maybe it's a hot tea milkshake? :awesome:

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    I shall go into my local Starbucks and request "A hot tea milkshake" and watch the fall-out as the young student assistant barista looks confused, alarmed, panics and goes into total meltdown.

    Worth it just for that, sometimes.

    lobsterKundo
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    So, @Bunks 'ave you bleedin' 'ad that bleedin' cup of bleedin' English Tea yet, mate?

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    Yes!! Thanks @federica and it was delicious.

    I was waiting until I could upload photos again to post here but it appears I still can’t.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Don't keep the picture too long or it will stew and taste disgusting...

    adamcrossleylobsterBunksKundo
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