Preparing tea properly is important in capturing the best flavor and aroma. Keep these tips in mind when preparing wulong tea and you’ll be making great tea in no time!
Use good water!
You’ll want to use bottled water. Try to avoid tap water as it contains minerals that can influence the taste…and not for the better! Any bottled water should be fine. Keep in mind when preparing…
Temperature makes difference!
Different teas release their unique flavors and fragrance’s at specific temperature ranges. Wu-long tea tastes best when the water is boiled between 165 – 190 degrees, which is considered a light boil.
Preparing using a standard western style teapot
Wu-longs can be prepared using a standard western style teapot. Keep in mind that wu-long tea turns out best when the actual leaves are allowed to expand to the exact size of the teapot, so in general a smaller teapot usually works best. You’ll need something to boil the water in (any pot or pan will do) and then the actual teapot will be used to brew the tea.
- Bring fresh water to a light boil 165 – 190 degrees
- Remove from heat.
- Pour the hot water into the teapot then discard (this warms the teapot and gets rid of “impurities”)
- Now, add 2-3 tsp of loose leaf wu-long tea into the teapot
- Pour enough hot water to cover the leaves; pour off immediately.
- Add about 6 oz of hot water and steep for 2-3 minutes
- Almost done! – Pour with a strainer into an individual cup.
- You should get 4-6 infusions; ( you may need to steep a little longer each time) each with a slightly different range of flavors.
The secret to really great tea…
The type of teapot you brew your tea in actually makes a BIG difference in taste and fragrance of whatever type of tea you are brewing. The traditional Chinese method of brewing uses clay pots exclusively, known as ” Yixing teapots “(pronounced ‘yee-shing‘).
The special zisha clay (containing iron, quartz and mica, and found only in Yixing) from which they are made absorbs the delicate flavours of the tea and the teapot becomes more seasoned with each use. If you use your yixing teapot for many years you can actually brew a tasty cup of tea by just adding hot water to the teapot!
You will only want to brew one type of tea in each specific Yixing teapot, for instance many families have one for wu-longs and one for green teas etc…
Follow the same directions above except use about 4 tsp of wu-long tea.
Step 5 is known as “rinsing the leaves” and takes come of the bitterness and caffeine out of the tea.
You don’t have to use this special earthenware type pot however it does make each infusion seem somewhat unique as the tea oils accumulate every time you use it.