One of the most common questions we get is how to brew tea. And it is asked for good reason. The brewing of tea is just as important as having good tea leaves. Even the most exquisite and high quality of teas must be prepared properly, or else the flavor may be ruined in the brewing process.

Fortunately, it is quite easy to brew a fantastic cup of tea! A good brew has five basic parts: water, amount of tea, temperature, time and equipment. We’ve made a small chart that should help demystify how to brew tea. Here goes…

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  • Water – Brewed tea is mostly water, so if your water tastes “funny,” so will your tea. Always start with good water.
  • Amount – A good starting point for leaves-to-water ratio is 1 teaspoon per 6oz. Add a touch more leaves if you prefer a bolder flavor.
  • Temperature – The ideal temperature depends on the type of tea. When preparing black tea, dark oolong tea and herbals, use near-boiling water 180o-200oF (not boiling!). However, it’s important to use slightly cooler water when steeping more delicate teas, such as green tea, light oolong and white teas (170-175F°).
  • Time – They say “time heals all wounds.” However, it can also make tea turn bitter. Steep time is important. Black tea should steep for 3-4 minutes. Any longer and it can become overly astringent and bitter. For light oolong and green teas, steep for only 1-2 minutes, or 3 if you’re looking for a strong cup. Herbals (tisanes) should steep for 4-6 minutes.
  • Equipment – When hot water is added, tea leaves can unfurl up to 5 times their dry size. So to make a great tea you need to give your leaves some room to expand. If using an infuser basket, use as broad and deep of a basket as possible for the pot or cup you’re brewing in. 
  • Check out our selection of teaware at Use our simple mesh steeper or your favorite style teapot to brew and serve your tea. 
  • Now, go make a cup of tea!