Whether it's a celebration of the Boston Tea Party, a party to cheer the mistaken invention of the tea bag by Thomas Sullivan in 1908 in New York,
or a winter soiree of your own, having a vessel for brewing the perfect cup of tea makes life's simpler pleasures more, well, pleasurable!
Two of my favorites:
Bon Jour's Loire Collection has a Glass Tea Maker with an infuser basket.
Fill with your favorite loose tea (ginger peach, anyone?).
A rough rule of thumb is 1 teaspoon (plus "1 extra for the pot") of loose tea for every
6 to 8 ounces of water.
Fill the carafe with hot* water and let steep for a number of minutes,
depending on your tastes and the type of tea brewed.
Slowly press the infuser's plunger down to filter the tea, automatically shutting off the brewing process, then pour and enjoy!
One of my favorite features of this tea maker is its patented shut off infuser--
which seals in the hydrated tea leaves in the solid chamber, stopping the brew process and giving me more control over flavor.
When I want to "class things up", I bring out my
Staub Enameled Cast Iron Teapot with Infuser.
Long a fan of cast iron's heat retention, I can brew a few perfect cups of tea in this baby
at once, remove the loose tea captured in the infuser, and then bring
this class act to the table to pour, sip and keep the tea hot for another cup.
This teapot is THE perfect gift for the tea lover who has everything!
Tea Myth Debunked
Myth: All teas should be brewed with boiling water
Fact: Different teas require different optimal water temperatures for brewing. For example, black teas are best enjoyed when brewed with water that just reaches a boiling point. Delicate green or white teas can taste bitter when brewed with boiling water ~ optimum water temperature is between 155F and 195F for green, white and most oolong teas.
As always, shop locally to see if your favorite shop carries any of these products.