essential tea tools

The 3 Essential Tea Tools For A Wonderful Tea Experience

October 26, 2016 in Learn / Tea Thoughts

There is no doubt I am addicted to tea ware as I have been known to be up all night looking for new teapots, matcha bowls, tea cups, etc. online. As I rearrange my tea stash and tea ware on my shelf, I notice that over time I have accumulated quite a bit of items. Everything from tea trays, infusers, scoops and even matcha sifters. I really love having pretty tea things that can add to my tea experience and be a beautiful display in my home. However, that is not always needed. I still enjoyed my tea immensely back when all I had were three essential tea tools.

A common question I get from those just starting to get into tea is something along the lines of “what do I need to make tea?” With so many creative and fun tea products out there, it’s easy to get lost from the simplicity of tea and just want all the new gadgets and designs. It can also be somewhat intimidating to see all these products and not know where to begin exactly. What you actually need, especially if you’re just beginning in the world of tea, are things you probably already have at home. I’m outlining the three very basic, yet, essential tea tools that you should have to get started on your tea journey. You don’t need a lot of things to have a wonderful tea experience. This was all I had years ago, so I know it works!

– 3 Essential Tea Tools –

A Cup

Whether it’s a souvenir mug or a vintage tea cup, something to hold your tea is a good place to start. Some of my favourite homes for tea are mugs and tea cups that hold special memories. Nowadays, my cupboards are full of mugs of all shapes and sizes –tall, skinny, wide, short, square, round– but when I started with tea I just had a simple round, porcelain white mug. Of course, I dreamed of having a glass mug or a fancy tea cup, but it didn’t change the taste of my tea and the overall feeling I was experiencing. 


Tea is mainly water so there is no doubt that you’ll need it and, of course, you’ll need something to heat your water as well. A kettle is the best place to start. However, it doesn’t need to be the fanciest, most expensive one out there. I’ve been drinking tea for years and it wasn’t until last year that I finally decided to get a variable temperature kettle. Before then, I had a simple stove top tea kettle (with the loudest whistle possible, seriously!) that I used to heat my water and sometimes, if I remembered, I would get my tea thermometer out to get an exact temperature before steeping my tea leaves.

Tea Leaves

So you need something to hold the tea… check!

Then you need something to actually steep the tea in… check!

Let’s not forget about the actual tea leaves!

Like most, when I started my tea journey, tea bags were what I used before I knew about loose leaf tea. At first, I remember being confused at the thought of loose tea leaves. I didn’t know how to steep them without a bag of some sort, so I had just placed the tea leaves directly in my mug and poured the water. That’s really all there is to it! I was very satisfied with the results, until I tried that with a rooibos blend I picked up at a local tea shop then. Truthfully, you don’t need anything else to make and enjoy your tea. But, if there is one other item you want to add, an infuser basket to sit in your cup or mug will be helpful especially for those smaller tea leaves or tisanes that you don’t really want to steep and drink without straining.

If you are just beginning, try to experience tea with just these three essential tea tools and see where that takes you. Even if you’re not a tea beginner, put aside your fancy gadgets just once to go back to the basics and where you first fell in love with the beverage.

*photo credit: soikkoratamo What birds have left via photopin (license)

What is another simple tea essential you can’t live without? Let me know in the comments!

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  • Reply Brittany of Wight Tea Co October 26, 2016 at 1:52 pm

    This is great advice for overwhelmed starters. Loose-leaf tea can be easy, it’s after you’ve cultivated an obsession that your roommates get mad at you for having too many tea cups, pots, etc. in the cabinets.

    • Reply Lu Ann Pannunzio October 26, 2016 at 2:04 pm

      Haha, yes! That is so true. It’s one of the best obsessions out there 🙂

  • Reply notes on tea October 26, 2016 at 10:17 pm

    I like the idea of simple tea: a generous infuser mug & good loose leaf. You covered water & temperature. How about amount of leaf & steep time? I think figuring out your leaf to water ratio & steep time preferences are a couple of good tools.

    • Reply Lu Ann Pannunzio October 27, 2016 at 3:16 pm

      Yes, definitely good info to know as well. However, I never measured my tea or timed the steepings when I first started my tea journey. It was all just about making it however I liked it.

  • Reply RuiA October 27, 2016 at 3:46 am

    Absolutely keeping it simple makes absolute sense. My teaware is confined to 2 gaiwans, 2 teapots (one of which is a 45ml teapot) and 3 40ml cups and all this duplication is because I mostly drink raw and ripe pu’er tea.

    The only other tool that is essencial for me is a pu’er tea needle for me to pry leaves from the tea cakes and bricks.

    As to the amount of pu’er I have at home, please do not ask…

    • Reply Lu Ann Pannunzio October 27, 2016 at 3:22 pm

      I’m imagining piles and piles of pu’er cakes and bricks. Am I close? 🙂 lol

      • Reply RuiA October 28, 2016 at 2:09 am

        LOL How did you guess?

        My wife has now forbidden me to buy anymore without her prior approval!

  • Reply Gabriela Green October 30, 2016 at 10:06 am

    Indeed, tea is so simple and so good! Yet I have as well a cupboard full of various tea mugs and cute tea cups. I thinks that once you start loving tea, you are instantly attracted by the variety of accessories you can find out there.

    • Reply Lu Ann Pannunzio October 30, 2016 at 9:04 pm

      I agree. Once you start, you can’t stop. I thinking starting your tea journey is easy. It’s once you get hooked and want all the tea things…that makes it difficult. On the bank account at least! Lol

  • Reply mug souvenir February 5, 2017 at 9:46 am

    Yes, you are absolutely right whatever mug is used, the important thing is the taste of tea

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