Traditionally, Taiwanese only drink hot brewed tea. Only recently have many Taiwanese started to try different ways to enjoy teas in hot and humid weather, making iced tea!
Making iced tea is not just throwing ice in with some pre-brewed tea. As tea lovers, we believe iced tea should be as complex, interesting, and delicious as hot, fresh, quality tea. Different from hot brewed iced tea, cold brewed tea preserves more of the naturally sweet flavors and is so easy to make!
According to tea researches, cold brewed tea releases less tannin and caffeine, which usually cause bitterness and astringency. Astringent tannins dry out the tongue, leaving you feeling parched even after a big gulp. Caffeine may cause too much acid in the stomach, especially while drinking tea on an empty stomach. Instead, cold brewed tea releases more of the amino acids that are found in tea, which makes the tea taste sweeter. When cold tea stays in the mouth, the warm temperature in your mouth triggers the extraction of flavonoids, the main source of the aroma in tea. It is why cold brewed tea tastes fresher and sweeter than hot brewed iced tea. For those who are caffeine conscious, cold brewed tea extracts 75% less caffeine compared hot brewed tea. Therefore, cold brewed tea is not only a perfect fresh beverage in summer, but also wonderful for evening drinking!
Simple cold brewed tea recipe
- Prepare a glass or stainless water bottle. Avoid plastic material, because plastic smell may contaminate the tea liquor.
- Put 3 to 4 grams of loose tea leaves in 500 to 600 grams of room temperature spring water.
- Steep in fridge for 8 to 10 hours, you can steep longer if prefer a stronger flavor.
- Once you’re done steeping, don’t toss those leaves! You can re-steep them for a second or even third brew by steeping them for a longer time, but not more than 24 hours.
- Cold brewed tea should be consumed within 3 days.
Generally speaking, all kinds of good quality tea can be brewed in cold water. But, not every tea makes a delicious flavor with the cold-brew method. Light fermented teas, like white tea, green tea and Baozhong tea, are suitable for the cold-brew method. Medium to heavy fermented teas, like Tie Guan Yin, Pu-er and black tea, are not recommended for the cold-brew method.