How to make a proper cup of tea.

Probably the most important part of learning about tea is learning how to make a proper cup of tea.

Technically, making tea just involves soaking leaves in hot water, but there’s an amusing amount of controversy over various aspects of the process. Should the water be boiling or just below boiling? How much tea should you add and how long should you steep it? Should you add milk before or after you add tea to your cup? (This last point is really the only one I’m obnoxious about: milk goes in first, darn it. That way it doesn’t scald and you get an auto-stir.)

Here’s a site that’s got a helpful write-up on the subject:

Tea of the week: Harney and Sons’ Pomegranate Oolong. This was really, really good! I haven’t had a lot of oolong, but this was nice and actually tasted like pomegranate — a lot of fruit-flavored teas can be artificially sweetened and taste nothing like what they’re trying to imitate. Harney and Sons is probably my favorite “fancy” tea brand — it’s on the expensive side, but their Earl Grey and lapsang souchong are to die for. I’d definitely go for more of this.

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