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Red Blossom Blog

What is the Best Way to Boil Water for Tea?

What is the Best Way to Boil Water for Tea?

Released to public domain by Matthew McBrayer via Unsplash.

If high quality tea leaves are the star of a show in a good cup of tea, then the right water is the entire supporting cast. We’ve written before about the importance of water quality, but the flavor of this all-important ingredient can also be influenced by the method and vessel used to heat it. Today we’ll break down all the different ways to boil water, and how each one can affect your cup of tea.

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How to Brew Tea Without An Infuser

How to Brew Tea Without An Infuser

Tea infusers come in many shapes and sizes, from filtering bags pre-filled with tea, to infuser baskets that fit in the top of a pot or cup, to teapots with filter holes pierced directly at the base of the spout. All of these specialized tools can simplify the brewing process by helping to remove the leaves from the water when the tea is ready to drink.

Check out our list of ALL the ways to brew loose leaf tea >>

It is absolutely possible, however, to brew loose tea leaves without any specialized equipment! Here are two different methods, using the simplest tools, to brew any type of loose leaf tea.

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5 Great Reasons to Drink Tea Instead of Coffee

5 Great Reasons to Drink Tea Instead of Coffee

Do you depend on a daily cup of coffee to get out of bed in the morning? Maybe you need another by the time you get to work, and another after lunch to power through the afternoon slump. By the end of the day, coffee consumption can really add up. Coffee shop concoctions or high quality beans come with a high price tag, milk and sugar in many coffee drinks add extra calories, and high levels of caffeine can disrupt sleep (and send you reaching for the coffee pot again tomorrow morning).

There’s nothing wrong with enjoying a cup of coffee, but cutting back a bit can help avoid building a caffeine tolerance, and keep it feeling like a treat, instead of a necessity. Here are five good reasons to choose a cup of tea over a cup of coffee, especially if it’s the third latte of the day.

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5 Festive Teas to Pair with Holiday Dinners

5 Festive Teas to Pair with Holiday Dinners

For most of us, holiday festivities are all about the food, but those who love tea know that the right brew can enhance any flavor experience. Whether you need a dose of caffeine to power a long day of cooking, want to find the right pairing for rich flavors, or need something to help digest all those delicious delicacies, these five teas have you covered.

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Signs of Quality: Bagged Teas vs. Loose Leaves

Signs of Quality: Bagged Teas vs. Loose Leaves

For a large number of tea drinkers in the modern world, tea bags are the norm. In any regions where European influences have shaped the tea culture, bagged teas are readily available in grocery stores and cafes, while loose leaf teas are sold in specialty shops, associated with special brewing rituals, or generally considered “too fancy” for everyday consumption.

In fact, the difference between bagged and loose leaves is only that: packaging. Loose tea leaves are not always of better quality than those found in bags, and bagged teas are not always “easier” to brew. As with any aspect of tea, the manner in which the leaves are packaged is a choice that each tea drinker can make for themselves. In this blog post, we’ll break down what you can (and can’t) tell about a tea’s quality from the way it is packaged.

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Tasting Notes: Bitterness vs. Astringency

Tasting Notes: Bitterness vs. Astringency

Tea and wine have a lot in common. High quality examples of both are recognized by varieties, or environmentally specialized sub-categories of a single plant species. Both depend on factors of terroir, including soil quality and climate, to develop ideal flavor profiles. And both require skilled craftsmanship and attention to detail in order to meet the high standards of connoisseurs.

Find out more about our standards for judging high quality tea >>

Though the resulting products are very different, there are also parallels between flavor quality, and the way that the final cup is judged. While each presents a huge range of flavor profiles, bitterness and astringency are often cited in tasting notes for both, carrying inherent subtext about the overall quality of the final product.

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What is Da Hong Pao Tea?

What is Da Hong Pao Tea?

As one of the most famously celebrated teas in China, Da Hong Pao (translated as either ‘Big Red Robe’, or more poetically, ‘Grand Scarlet Robe’) is surrounded by myth and legend. While fantastic stories have helped to build this tea’s reputation as a rare and valuable commodity, they say little about the quality of flavor found in any particular leaf. So what makes Da Hong Pao so special, and what does it mean when a product is labeled “Big Red Robe”?

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6 Reasons to Drink Pu-erh Tea

6 Reasons to Drink Pu-erh Tea

Distinct from any other tea style, the aged, fermented teas from Yunnan Province known as pu-erh remain somewhat mysterious in the western world. The style we know today was developed relatively recently (in the context of tea’s long history) and didn’t reach peak popularity until late in the 20th century - long after modern western traditions had diverged from their Chinese roots.

Pu-erh as a category is especially captivating for a multitude of reasons, not limited to commonly marketed health benefits. Here are six reasons we think pu-erh tea is worth drinking, whether as a daily brew or a special treat.

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