You probably have a teapot…or two…or three…or a whole bevy! So, why not put them to good use steeping up teas that are so enticing that you can drink them by the potful? “Great idea!” you say. I think so, too.
Awhile back I wrote an article about “gulper teas” that could be drunk by generous mouthfuls instead of dainty sips. Then, I wrote another article, this time about “gulper teas to start your day.” These teas are all good to steep by the potful for several reasons:
- You will want at least two cupfuls.
- Your spouse will want at least two cupfuls.
- Your guests will want at least two cupfuls.
- Your kids and other relatives will want at least two cupfuls.
- The tea can sit in the pot while everyone gulps those two cupfuls (assuming that you don’t leave the tea leaves in the teapot – try the 2-teapot steeping method here) and stay fairly fresh tasting.
Phew! You’re gonna need a big teapot! Not to mention big cups or mugs. And a ton of scones with clotted cream and jam.
The key is to avoid those teas that are best served gongfu style, with short, frequent steepings that should be consumed as soon as the liquid is cool enough to drink without scalding your lips and tongue. In addition to the teas listed in the articles named above, I’ve listed a few here that in my experience can take being steeped up in a 4-cup or 6-cup teapot.
- Ti Kuan Yin Iron Goddess Oolong Tea — Believe it or not, this tea that is often served gongfu style can be steeped in a larger teapot for your gulper tea time; also, I keep mentioning this tea because it’s just so darned good. Oolongs are semi-oxidized and have a unique flavor with more body and less bitterness than green teas. Tea leaves destined to be used for Oolongs are picked at a more mature stage of development, wilted in the direct sun, and then shaken in tubular bamboo baskets to bruise the edges of the leaves so they oxidize faster than the center. After 15-25 minutes, the tea is fired, locking in that unique flavor. This premium grade tea can at first taste bitter, then sweet, and finishes with a fragrance that lingers on your palate. This tea is best enjoyed hot, and delivers a light cup with a pale green-yellow liquor that you will want to enjoy by the potful.
- Autumn Flush Darjeeling — With its strong flavor profile, this final flush of the Darjeeling growing season is great to partake of by the potful, too. If you like milk in your tea, steep this one up extra strong. I find that milk and sweetener heighten the fruity character these teas are known for. A potful doesn’t last long in our house!
- Golden Heaven Yunnan China Black Tea — A tea that delights the eyes before steeping, with its tippy, neat, wiry, and well-made leaves, then steeps up a pot that continues the thrills. This tea produces a bright reddish cup with a brisk, fragrant aroma and malty taste. One of the highest quality teas available from Yunnan Province, it is made during the last 2 weeks of March and the first 2 weeks of April, delivering a brighter golden tip. Known as one of the worlds great teas, this tea is perfect on its own, but also takes a bit of milk or sugar well, as it helps to capture the malty character and helps keep the peppery quality from overwhelming you. A pot of this and your day will seem even breezier!
Steep a potful today and have a great tea time.
See more of A.C. Cargill’s articles here.
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