To make a good cup of tea, two things are required: good tea and good water.

 

Good tea means a proper amount of fresh, good-quality tea.

Store tea in a cool, dry and dark place. Tea easily absorbs odours, so store it in an airtight container. The longer you keep the tea, the more it will oxidize and lose its aroma. Don't buy large quantities. Buy good quality tea, not only for a better taste, but with good tea you can also use the same tea for more than one infusion.

 

Good water means fresh, soft, boiled water at the right temperature.

Use a carbon filter if the water is too hard or buy bottled water. Always boil the water first. Hard water may become softer if you let it boil for some time. For all green teas, water of 100°C is too hot! It will make the tea bitter. Let the water cool down to the appropriate temperature (see chart below).


1. Boil the water. Rinse the teapot with the just boiled water. Pour the boiled water into the cups you will use to cool the water and to warm the cups. Let it stand till the water has cooled down to the right temperature (see chart below).
   
2. Put the appropriate amount of tea into the teapot (see chart below). When making a tea for the first time, use the advised amount of tea and brewing time, and adjust this later to your own taste.
   
3. Pour the water into the teapot and steep for the required time (see below). Brewing too long may turn the tea bitter.
   
4. When the tea is ready, pour it out at once, until the last drop, while dividing it equally over the cups.
   

Recommended quantities, temperatures and steeping time


Tea
number of people
amount of tea
water temperature
amount of water
brewing time
Gyokuro (high quality)
3
10 g
50°C
60 ml
150 sec
Gyokuro (ordinary)
3
10 g
60°C
60 ml
120 sec
Sencha (high quality)
3
6 g
70°C
180 ml
120 sec
Sencha (ordinary)
3
6 g
90°C
270 ml
60 sec
Sencha (fukamushicha), Kukicha
3
9 g
80°C
270 ml
60 sec
Bancha
3
9 g
90°C
390 ml
30 sec
Kyobancha
3
6 g
100°C
400 ml
boil leaves for 2~3 min
Hojicha
3
9 g
95°C
420 ml
30 sec
Genmaicha
3
9 g
95°C
420 ml
30 sec
Matchairi genmaicha
3
9 g
95°C
420 ml
30 sec
Matcha
1
2 g
80-90°C
60 ml
beat with wisk till foamy

Quantities may be adjusted according to personal taste. 2 grams equals approximately one teaspoon.

For Japanese teas, small teapots are preferred. It is best to let the tea leaves unfold freely in the pot, or use a large filter.