What kind of tea are you going to serve: sencha, gyokuro, genmai-cha, hoji-cha or ban-cha? It is important to know what kind of tea you are about to drink because the amount and temperature of the water will differ depending on the tea.
Look for a teapot with wire mesh inside to prevent tea leaves from pouring into the cup. Mesh attached to the inside of the spout is preferable to detached, because it allows the tea leaves to circulate freely.
It is very important to use filtered water that is first brought to a boil when brewing Japanese tea. After boiling, let the water cool to a suitable temperature for each tea type. Here is a tip: the higher the grade of tea, the lower the temperature. This is because high- grade tea has subtle flavors that are overpowered in hot water. In general, premium sencha is brewed at about 160°F (70°C), regular sencha at 175°F (80°C), genmai-cha, ban-cha, and hoji-cha at 190°F (90°C).
Are you using a mug or small Japanese style cups? The amount of tea leaves used depend on the volume desired and the tea type.
Green tea is very sensitive to heat and humidity. Once the package is opened, store it in an air-tight bag or tea canister and keep it in the refrigerator.
1. Pour boiled water into a cup(s) and let it cool to 140°F (60°C) or less.
*TIP: Pouring hot water once reduces the temperature by 50°F (10°C).
2. Spoon two tablespoons of tea leaves (6g) into the teapot. Adjust the amount by the size of the spoon.
3. Pour water into the teapot and steep for 5 - 10 minutes until the tea leaves are completely hydrated. Do not shake the teapot while waiting.
4. Gently pour the tea into a teacup(s). Do not pour all at once, rather pour it in several consecutive pours to ensure the water circulates through all the leaves. Tap out any remaining drops so no water remains in the teapot.