There's never a bad time for a good cup of tea, but are you brewing yours up in the right way?
Stephen Twining, whose family has been selling tea for ten generations, recently spoke with stuff.co.nz to explain just how you should go about making a proper pot of tea.
Start with fresh, cold water
If water has been sitting in your kettle for a while, dump it out and start with fresh. Mr Twining explains that fresh water contains more dissolved oxygen and this will help improve the taste of your tea.
Pre-heat your teapot
While the kettle is brewing, splash some hot water into your tea pot and then tip it out. This will help to keep the contents of the pot warmer for longer. A tea cosy could also help.
Use the right amount of tea
The amount of tea you use will affect the intensity of flavour. Mr Twining recommends starting with one tea bag for every cup of tea that the pot holds. You can then adjust the amounts according to your tastes.
Give it time
Tea often looks ready to drink within a few seconds after putting the bag in the water. Twining warns that this doesn't mean the tea is done. He calls it "photographic tea," meaning that it looks good, but it's actually "just hot, coloury water."
Allow your tea to brew for at least three minutes. This will allow it to release all of its flavours, as well as the antioxidants that make it so good for you.
Make it your own
According to Mr Twining, "It's your cup of tea, and you should drink it the way you like it." This means you can make it as strong or as weak as you like and the type of milk you use (if any) is completely up to you.
However, there's one thing that he just doesn't approve of when it comes to tea: "Putting sugar in it is frankly barbaric," he claims.