When people talk generally of tea in Western culture, they’re often referring to black tea. Sun tea, sweet tea, iced tea, afternoon tea…these well-known categories of tea are typically made using black tea. Even the popular English Breakfast and Earl Grey blends are made from black tea leaves. This is in contrast to Eastern culture—in countries like China and Japan—where tea typically refers to green tea.
Black teas are typically brewed for longer periods of time and in hotter temperatures than green teas. Generally, this is somewhere between 200 and 212 degrees for 3 to 5 minutes.
Using about 2 grams (1 teaspoon) of loose leaf tea per 8 oz. cup of water is a safe bet.
Always start with fresh, pure, cold filtered water when you brewing tea. Spring water is the best.
Cover your tea while it steeps to keep all the heat in the steeping vessel.
Don’t oversteep your tea! The longer your tea steeps, the more quickly it will release any bitterness and astringency. Taste your tea after the recommended steeping time and then decide if you’d like it to steep a little longer.
Most high-quality loose leaf black teas can be steeped multiple times.