Sure, teabags are great for when you’re travelling – or carrying your tea to and from work. They’re perfect too for self-service in restaurants, hotels and cafes. The packaging is needed to keep your tea fresh and clean.
When making tea at home though, we are going to show you there are very few reasons to choose a teabag over loose – and even better, if you choose loose, why you’ll have a much better tea experience.
So, what is the #looseleafchallenge?
It’s our challenge to you to swap your tea bags for loose leaf tea at home every day throughout the month of January. We think you’ll very quickly discover just how simple and rewarding loose tea drinking can be. And you’ll have a new habit right from the start of the year. A habit that’s better for you and for the environment.
Why would you want to join?
• You’ll reduce your unnecessary waste – loose tea has less processing and packaging.
• You’ll save money – all of our loose teas cost less than in teabags. With loose tea you’re paying for the quality of the tea, not the packaging, after all.
• You’ll open up a whole new world of variety and flavour – so many of the best tasting teas never make it into teabags
• They’ll be nothing in between you and your tea – the simple comforting, satisfying and transporting drink that’s a culmination of man and nature working in harmony.
How can you get involved?
• It’s as simple as making that switch every time you make a cup of tea in January!
• We’d love to see photos and hear about your switch on social – make sure you tag us using @jingtea and #looseleafchallenge #freeyourtea
Need a hand getting started?
• We’ve gathered everything you need to get started here. You’ll find a ‘how to make loose tea simply’ guide, instant recommendations for which teas to start with, and an open invitation to chat to one of our tea gurus with any questions.
Still need convincing? Let’s take a look at whether loose tea really does taste better…
How good your tea tastes will always depend on the quality of your leaves first and foremost. You’ll find high quality teas packed in teabags – there is no quality difference between the teas we, for example, pack in teabags or sell loose. You’ll also find low quality tea served loose. So assuming you’ve chosen high quality tea, let’s compare the same tea made loose or in a teabag.
Teabags tend to be small and so you can’t ever get that many leaves in them. They’re designed for tea that’s made using a small amount of leaf and a long infusion time.
Does loose tea taste better?
A big benefit of loose is that you are in control of how much leaf you’re using – and this then gives you control on how full-bodied, flavourful or light, if you like it that way, your tea tastes.
Another benefit of freeing your leaves from the constrains of a bag is the extra space the leaves have to move around, unfurl and interact with the water. The more the leaves interact with the water, the more they’ll release their distinctive flavours, and so very often freeing your leaves meaning a better tasting cup of tea.
You can even take this one step further. When you’re in control of how much leaf you’re using and your leaves are free, you can then start to experiment with infusion times and the changes in flavour they can bring. In China, the traditional gong-fu way of making tea uses a lot of leaf in a small pot and lots of relatively quick infusions. This way the leaves are infused multiple times, releasing remarkably different flavours with each infusion. Using our Red Dragon as an example, when made with 6g leaf in 120mls of water (we used a Tea Master) and just 1-minute infusions, the first infusion was light and full of lychee, raspberry fruit sweetness; only in the second and third infusion does the syrupy feel of the tea and the malt and chocolate flavours show themselves. It’s a neat way to dive into the complexity of certain teas. If this sounds fun to you, read more about finding flavour in tea this way here.