October 05, 2007

French press tea

I meant to write this post from a wifi-enabled cafe while drinking tea and eating a pastry, but an unexpected meeting thwarted my plans. I am writing from home, in the kitchen to be exact where I do a lot of my tea drinking. Another place in my home that I drink tea is on the futon in the living room. I like to drink tea when I watch British comedies or mysteries.

Anyway, I've spent the last week or so making tea in a French press. A gift of green tea from a friend who recently returned from China made me ask the question: I don't have a gaiwan or other appropriate accountrements, so aside from my teaballs, how else can I prepare loose leaf tea? My husband told me that a colleague in his office makes tea with a French press so I decided to give ours a try (or several). The leaves were steeped for approximately 4 minutes. The combinations were very enjoyable with the exception of the admittedly unusual pairing of Pu-Erh and jasmine pearl.

Pu-Erh and about 7 pearls

Pu-Erh, cinnamon stick, cardamom, and clove

Green leaves and jasmine pearls

Two teaspoons of tea leaves gave a slightly bitter taste to the tea (note the before and after size of the leaves).

Green leaves and a piece of Jamaican hibiscus
A winning combination of citrus from the hibiscus and earthy nose and end note from the green tea.


  1. The French Press is an excellent tool for tea. All the local tea houses in my area use it to brew quantities in excess of 2 servings.

    There is one drawback. If you pour the tea and leave the used leaves in the French Press, some will get stuck between the press' filter and the glass after drying, stopping the plunger altogether. I've broken two presses trying to free the plunger. Luckily the merchant I purchased it from has generously replaced my broken items free of charge.

  2. I make my loose leaf tea in my french press all the time! I hadn't seen anyone else do it until now. - Julie


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