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How to brew tea with a gaiwan

HOW TO BREW TEA WITH A GAIWAN 


IN THIS GUIDE WE'LL GO OVER HOW TO BREW TEA WITH A GAIWAN

This method is ideal for artfully brewing a small cup of tea and for tasting multiple steeps in quick succession. The gaiwan consists of a small bowl that widens at the top with a domed lid and saucer. The shape and size of the gaiwan allows for shorter steep times, as the tea can more easily release its flavors. It’s made to hold a small amount of tea, about the same size as a classic china teacup (about 6 oz. or ¾ cup of tea). While gaiwans are used in Gong Fu (Chinese tea ceremony), anyone can make their tea Gong Fu style by following these simple steps.


WHAT YOU'LL NEED
◦ GAIWAN
◦ TEA LEAVES
◦TEASPOON OR SCOOP
◦ POT OR KETTLE TO BOIL WATER
◦ FRESH WATER (PREFERABLY FILTERED)
◦ YOUR FAVORITE TEA CUP
PREPARATION
STEP 1
WARM THE GAIWAN
Warm up the gaiwan and your teacups by adding hot water to them. Then pour out and discard the hot water. This helps keep the temperature consistent.
STEP 2
WARM AND RINSE THE TEA LEAVES
 Measure 1 rounded teaspoon (~2 grams) of tea leaves. Pour the tea leaves into the gaiwan and cover with the lid for about 30 seconds to warm up the leaves. Then quickly rinse the leaves by pouring water into the gaiwan. Keeping the lid on, strain out and discard the water. This allows the leaves to open up so their full flavors can be released. Now the leaves are ready to brew.
BREWING
STEP 1
ADD THE WATER & STEEP
Add hot water, cover with the lid, and steep for 5-10 seconds.(Temperatures vary depending on tea type; see our general water temperature guide here.)
STEP 2
POUR THE TEA
Slightly tilt the lid, keeping it on the gaiwan as you pour the tea into your cup. The lid keeps the leaves in the gaiwan, ready for the next steep. Be sure to pour out all the tea into your teacup(s), leaving only the leaves in the gaiwan. Enjoy your first steep!
STEP 3
RE-STEEP & ENJOY
Add water to the gaiwan and add 5-10 more seconds of steep time for each subsequent infusion. Enjoy multiple steeps (at least 3-5 cups). Some types of tea will offer 10+ infusions!
PRO TIP
With each infusion, take a moment to notice the aroma, color, mouthfeel, and taste of the tea. Notice how it gradually changes from steep to steep, flavors transforming as you experience every layer of these exquisite teas!