Which tea making tool do you need?
We have the tea leaves, the kettle, the good water. And now? We will need a few more tools to make tea. In this guide, we'll go over the basics to get you started making tea. The essential items, optional extras, material selection and our recommendations follow.
Basic tea making tools
If you're here, you probably know the Gong Fu way of making tea, and if not, you've already heard why it's the best way to make tea.
These are the basic tools you need to make Gong Fu style tea.
This is where the magic happens. Usually a teapot or some kind of gaiwan, meaning "covered cup", but even a traditional bowl works. You put in a handful of tea leaves from a good place, pour the water over it and sip the finished drink.
Pouring or "Decanting" jug
A place to pour tea after the tea is finished in the teapot or gaiwan. In Gong Fu tea making, this is called Gong Dao Bei. Don't forget that it must be able to hold as much tea as is made in the teapot at one time.
Hopefully fairly obvious, some nice object to drink from.
Basic considerations when choosing a tea making device
You can make tea anywhere and with anything, but having your own tea set makes drinking tea much more enjoyable. A few things to consider when buying your first tea set happen to be sizing, materials and optional extras.
For making Gong Fu tea, small tea sets work best to get the most out of the tea leaves. Typically 100-200ml teapots or gaiwans and 25-50ml cups to cool the tea faster and to share your activity with others.
You can find a wide range of materials used for tea sets. Mainly porcelain, glass, clay and metal. Each has its strengths and weaknesses, which we will explore in more depth in future posts. In advance, the main differences are as follows:
What we call "neutral" for tea, which means it doesn't change the taste or feel of the tea at all. For this reason, it works well with all teas and can be used to prepare any tea. There is no need to make a dedicated type of tea in it.
Like porcelain, glass also has a "neutral" effect. The main difference between glass and porcelain is in the retention of heat, glass dissipates heat slightly faster. For this reason, glass tea sets are best for green tea, but any type of tea can be made from glass.
Thanks to the unglazed inner surface, the clay pots absorb the tea and have a subtle effect on taste and touch. Clay also retains heat much better than porcelain and glass, making it more suitable for darker and larger leaf teas. Lighter, softer teas, such as fresh white and green teas, are generally not suitable for clay pots, with a few exceptions, which we will also discuss another time.
You may have seen metal tea sets for making tea, such as cast iron or silver teapots. These are usually not made in Gong Fu size, and as far as we could tell from our experiments, there isn't much benefit to using metal teapots, although a metal kettle to heat the water can add some minerality (cast iron).
Since we have already picked out the simple, clean, basic tools, let's highlight the other equipment with which you can complement your beginner's tea set even more:
The filter helps filter out the broken tea leaves that get into the cup. Some people prefer not to use them, as the fine particles in the tea that contribute to the texture also add to the tea drinking experience.
Making tea can be messy, especially if you're new to gaiwan. It also provides a nice base and the tea trays are not only functional.
A tea towel
Another "optional necessity" to finalize your set and de-clutter your tea party.
Our personal recommendations from our offer
Now that we've covered the basics, here are some suggestions for specific tools to get you started on the road.
Gong Fu Glass Teapot - Perfectly sized Gong Fu teapot that shows off the leaves and is easy to use.
Porcelain gaiwan – our clean white gaiwan works well with any tea.
You are porcelain glass spout – You can choose a spout that matches your gaiwan.
NGyÁ brown cup – A pair of matching cups for sharing tea.
Fine woven metal filter - To ensure crystal clear tea.
Gong Fu tea tray – It provides a wonderful and stable base for making tea.
Tea Towel - Super absorbent towel with a velvety blue top that looks and feels good.
Chabu - Frame your tea party with a beautiful tea runner. It completes the aesthetics of tea drinking and catches the spilled liquid.
Traveling Gong Fu Set – A practical and beautiful, stylish tool for making tea.
In the following, we will discuss the other tea-making tools in more detail. Nice teas, calm presence!