Brewing tea is both an art and a science. Scientists have been researching the right water temperatures for extracting different compounds for years, while tea masters spent centuries mastering the art of tea brewing. Making a perfect cup of green tea is anything but easy. The flavor of green tea depends on many compounds – from catechins and tannins to amino acids and volatiles, that make tea pleasant to drink. All of them need specific temperatures for the optimal extraction.
Before we begin with the actual tips on brewing the perfect cuppa, here is a quick introduction to green tea. Green tea is a type of tea that is harvested and then quickly preserved. Whereas black tea leaves are allowed to oxidize after they are picked, green tea leaves are immediately heated to prevent oxidation. Green tea is chock full of health benefits and contains antioxidants and nutrients that can decrease your risk of cancer, help you lose weight and help prevent dementia! So, how do you brew the perfect cup of Green Tea?
Use water that is at the optimal temperature
One of the most critical elements of the perfect cup of green tea is the temperature of the water. Water that is at a rolling boil is usually too hot for making green tea, resulting in a bitter and astringent taste. If the water is too cold, the full flavor will not be extracted out of the leaves. Ideally, use water that is between 160 and 180 degrees. A visual guide to this is when the water is hot and there are bubbles beginning to form on the bottom of the pot, but not on top. Basilur Tea Masters recommend heating the water until there's a steady stream of steam rising from the pot. Alternatively, you could boil the water completely and then let it cool for a few minutes.
Steep for just the right amount of time
Because green tea is so delicate, it’s important to steep for exactly two to three minutes. Less time will prevent the tea leaves from releasing their full flavor while more time will garner a bitter taste. We recommend that you brew your green tea for two minutes and then taste every 30 seconds thereafter until you get a taste that you like.
Use the highest quality tea leaves
The quality of the tea leaves you use for your cup of green tea obviously plays a large role in taste. Fresher tea leaves, that is ones that come loose as opposed to in tea bags, will generally produce a better flavor because the tea leaves have room to "breathe." The flavor is richer and more authentic than tea that comes prepackaged in tea bags.
Make sure you use good quality water
As you can see this, water makes it to this list once again, showcasing just how important it is for a perfect cup of tea, green or black! Water with too many minerals can sometimes counteract the natural minerals found in the tea leaves and produce a pungent taste. Purified or spring water is best since they are free from pollutants than can alter the tea's taste.
As you can see, brewing the perfect cup of green tea is a science. Now that you know how to properly make green tea, you can experiment with different types to see which you like best. Indulge yourself with a nice cup of Basilur tea, sit back and enjoy your fresh brew!