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How to Brew Tea: Best Brewing Times and Temperature by Tea Type

Updated: Dec 14, 2020

Like many things in life, tea brewing times are partly a personal choice. The table below gives the most desirable brewing times and temperatures for the different types of tea that we offer. Brewing longer gives a stronger taste, often more astringent or bitter, but also with more healthy antioxidants in the teacup. You need to brew and taste a few cups to find your personal ideal! And remember, all tea comes from the same plant (Camellia sinensis). Variety comes from the age of the leaves when picked, the processing of the picked leaves, and how it is blended with other ingredients.

No matter, there are a few things that are crucial to a great tasting cup of tea:

1. Use two teaspoons tea per 10 oz of water.

2. Use filtered or reverse osmosis water.

3. Never re-boil the water. You end up with flat tasting tea due to the loss of oxygen from the water during each boil.

4. Pre-heat the teapot with hot water before you brew the tea. And pre-heat the teacup with hot water before you add the brewed tea to the cup.

5. Use the ideal temperature for each tea type. Either with the “eye-guide” (just look at the water!), a thermometer, or a pot that boils to a pre-set temperature.

6. If you have a mixed tea blend, like black and rooibos, use the higher, longer brewing guide for the best flavor.

7. When in doubt just try it out. Again, and again.


I. GREEN/MATCHA: Brew at 160-170 degrees (water is steaming without bubbling) for 3 minutes. One example is our Lush Cucumber tea.

II. WHITE: Brew at 170-180 degrees (water is steaming without bubbling) for 4 minutes. White tea is minimally processed and/or young tea leaves.

III. OOLONG: Brew at 185-208 degrees (water is steaming with bubbles and movement) for 3 minutes. Prince Oolong is our blend of Oolong and Green teas.

IV. BLACK/PUERH: Brew at 190-212 degrees (water rolls and boils) for 5 minutes. Our French Black Tea is one of our favorites.

V. HERBAL/ROOIBOS: Brew at 212 degrees (water rolls and boils) for 5 minutes. Queen Victoria is a delicious example of an herbal tea.

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