Soho House asked us to share our tips on how to make the perfect cup of tea for their latest book, Morning Noon Night: A Way of Living. In this post we reveal some of the tips we share in the book.
Traditional English Breakfast is the UK’s favourite tea. It's a blend of black teas brought together to complement and balance. Despite its name, it’s a tea that can be drunk at all times of day as a refreshing pick-me-up. It should be refreshing, smooth but invigorating, with a clean flavour and satisfying aftertaste.
It’s important to note that not all tea should be brewed the same way. But for a classic English Breakfast, follow these steps for the perfect cup.
- Pick your tea. Loose leaf is best, because it allows the tea leaves enough freedom to infuse properly with the water, and you can have complete control of how much tea you add.
- Measure out your water and tea. The ideal ratio for Canton English Breakfast blend is 4g per 250ml.
- Use fresh filtered water to fill your kettle. Never reboil water as it changes the composition of the minerals, which in turn will affect the flavour of the tea.
- Use the right temperature water. For English Breakfast Tea, 95° is perfect. You can catch the kettle just before it boils, but a temperature controlled kettle is ideal. Boiling water can release too much tannin and impair the flavour – even of black tea. With more delicate teas, such as green, it can completely destroy it. Learn more about the importance of water temperature.
- Allow the tea to infuse for 2 minutes (4 minutes if adding milk). Time it, so it doesn’t over infuse and become bitter.
- Pour the tea. If you have any liquor left in the pot, decant it out to a jug. Never leave it in the pot with the tea leaves, as it will over brew.
A few tips
- If you take milk, it is personal preference as to whether it goes in first or last. Adding first results in a creamier flavour, as the fat in the milk emulsifies when the tea is poured. But adding the milk last allows you to judge the correct amount of milk to add for your taste.
- A tea pot is essential for brewing loose leaf tea. We love glass teapots as you can see the tea leaves swirl and dance as they infuse, but it really is down to what you prefer.
- If you like a stronger tea, add more tea, don’t brew it for longer.
- Teabags are not all bad, and there is most certainly a time and a place for them. You should look for a teabag that allows the tea leaves freedom to move around and infuse. Pyramid shape is best, and a tea that is not dust
- If you think you don’t like green tea because it’s bitter, try brewing a good quality green tea at 75° - you will be amazed at the difference.
- Store your tea in an airtight container away from light.
It is such an honor to be included in Morning Noon Night: A Way of Living by Soho House. To try the perfect cup of Canton tea yourself, head to any of the gorgeous Soho House properties in the UK.