Quality of water is an important factor in brewing a perfect cup of tea. Tea liquors well in soft spring water devoid of heavy minerals.
Heavily chlorinated tap water left overnight in an open pan covered with a soft cloth helps reduce chlorine and improve water quality. Boil and use this water for an improved brew.
Select a reputed brand of good tea. The blend of your choice will depend on your preferred habit of tea drinking viz. white – with milk, black – without milk, with ginger or with other flavours.
Large leaf teas such as OP (Orange Pekoe), FBOP (Flowery Broken Orange Pekoe) or Pekoe, will brew a lighter delicate cup. BOP (Broken Orange Pekoe) is a fine balance for consuming black tea (without milk) or white tea (with a dash of milk).
BOPF (Broken Orange Pekoe Fannings) and Dust teas with fine small leaf particles, are suited for connoisseurs who enjoy strong tea with milk.
Avoid using sugar in tea to enjoy the full flavour of good tea. Adding sugar changes the taste of good tea and the after taste of sugar in your mouth lingers on for a considerable period of time.
One teaspoonful or tea bag – two grams of tea is an ideal portion for brewing at 980 C (fresh boiled) water for three minutes for plain tea or five minutes (maximum) for strong milk tea. Double the quantity of tea – two teaspoons or two tea bags (four grams) for five minutes brewing time, if desired very strong to consume with extra milk.
Correct brewing is a rewarding, long lasting experience.
Anselm Perera (Mlesna Tea Centres)