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The Perfect Cup of Tea

Sebastian Beckwith, cofounder of In Pursuit of Tea, explains how best to brew your leaves.

The Perfect Cup of Tea

Photography: Burcu Avsar

Source: Martha Stewart Living


  • 4 grams tea leaves


  1. Fill an electric or stove-top kettle with water, ideally filtered.

  2. Heat water (see Cook's Note for temperature recommendations).

  3. Pour 1/2 cup hot water into a 10-to-12-ounce teapot and swish to warm pot up, about 5 seconds; discard water.

  4. Spoon 4 grams tea leaves (1 to 3 rounded tablespoons, depending on density of leaves) directly into teapot or into a basket strainer inside pot.

  5. Fill teapot with hot water and let steep (see Cook's Note for brewing times).

  6. When tea is ready, decant it or remove basket strainer to stop the steeping.

Cook's Note

Heat & Steep

All times are for 12 ounces of water with four grams of leaves

3 minutes
205 degrees (just off a boil)

2 minutes
180 degrees (when you see steam)

3 to 4 minutes
205 degrees (just off a boil)

2 minutes
180 degrees (when you see steam)

3 minutes
205 degrees (just off a boil)

2 minutes
190 degrees to 205 degrees (just off a boil)


Reviews (1)

  • acsilver925 23 Nov, 2014

    Great recipe, I do find that when it comes to tea the vessels used to brew and make the tea also matter. For me it has to be a silver teapot. Whether it is simply the fact it keeps the tea warmer for longer, the fact it looks great or simply the durability of silver (stronger if you drop the teapot, I know this from experience - unfortunately). It is worth trying different materials to see which works best for you.

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