How to Brew Pu-Erh Tea

Pu-erh tea is increasing in popularity because of its distinctive flavor and health benefits. 

Brewing this tea is slightly different from brewing loose tea generally, but easy enough once you know how. 

Getting the leaf to water ratio is key to brewing a good cup of this tea. Too little or too much of one or the other and you get weakly flavored water or a bowl of bitter liquor. 

Pu erh tea and brewed cup of tea.
How to brew pu-erh tea.

The perfect ratio will depend on the tea you are using and may require a little trial and error to get right. However, a good place to start is to use 1 gram of leaf to 15 grams of water. 

Step-by-step guide to steeping pu-erh

  1. Weigh your tea based on the volume of your teapot or cup. Use a sharp knife to cut some tea off the pu-erh brick until you have the right amount.
  2. Boil the water. You want to use 212 F/100 C temperature water to brew pu-erh. Heat extra water as you will be rinsing the pot and the tea before brewing your tea. 
  3. Pour hot water into the tepot or cup This is for rinsing and not for drinking. Pour out the water.
  4. Add the leaves to the teapot, pour enough water over them to cover them, wait for several seconds, then discard the water (you can do this twice if you prefer). 
  5. Pour boiling water over the tea leaves and allow the tea to steep for ten seconds. 
  6. Serve tea. 

You the leaves for additional brews, usually up to around 5 times. Gradually increase the steeping time by around 5 seconds per steep. 

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