How to brew Wu Yi Oolongs

Brewing Oolong with small pot

There are several ways to brew Chinese teas.


  1. Using a regular tea pot
  2. Using a Gaiwan
  3. Using a small clay teapot 100-150 ml and small cups

For Wu Yi Oolongs we highly recommend the latter two.

Regular Teapot

Simple add 10g of leaves to a normal teapot. Bring water to a full rolling boil and pour into the pot. Steep for a minute or two. Serve in cups.

Using a gaiwan or a small teapot

Gaiwans are a popular choice especially for formal tea tastings as the leaves are easily accessibly for viewing and enjoying the aroma  and the gaiwan does not alter the pure characteristics of the tea.  The Chinese used the word chōng or  pào to indicate the brew from a gaiwan or small teapot. The small Chinese clay teapots are another excellent alternative. They are easy to use and look stunning.

You will need a gaiwan or a small clay teapot, a small jug, a strainer, small cups and a drip tray or large bowl to catch water.

Here is how we mostly brew our oolongs

Use the same basic procedure for a gaiwan or a small teapot.

  1. Bring water to a full rolling boil.
  2. Heat and rinse the teaware with the boiling water
  3. Add leaves to the cup. I personally fill it about half full and start with short infusion times. You may however use less tea and increase the infusion time.
  4. Rinse tea leaves and drain immediately
  5. Bring water back to a rolling boil and pour gently into the gaiwan. The water should  preferable hit the side of the gaiwan first
  6. Allow to brew for a few seconds
  7. Pour into a small jug
  8. Serve in small cups
  9. Repeat 6-10 times increasing brewing time for each pào by about 15 seconds

The right temperature to brew Wu Yi Oolong Tea is between 93° and 100° Celsius and that means bringing the water to a full rolling boil. In general for Oolongs, the more roasted the leaf the higher the temperature required.

See our selection of fine Wu Yi teas.


 

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  • Erik

    Water that’s just boiled holds at least 95 degress Cecius – I thought that water for brewing tea should hold no more than about 80 degrees?

  • Thank you for your comment. Different teas require different temperatures. The right temperature to brew Wu Yi Oolong Tea is between 93° and 100° Celsius and that means bringing the water to a full rolling boil. In general for Oolongs, the more roasted the leaf the higher the temperature required. I’ll edit the post to make it more clear. 🙂