B1 Intermediate UK 385 Folder Collection
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Hey Teaheads. This is Don from Mei Leaf. In this video: how much tea do you need for Gong
Fu brewing? In this video I’m going to be giving you my tips on how to choose the amount
of tea to use just by looking at the leaf. This video is going to go under the "tea masterclass"
playlist. If at any point in time you enjoy this video then please give [it] the thumbs-up.
The more thumbs in the air, the more tea videos are going to come your way. If you haven't
subscribed to our YouTube channel then go click that button. For those of you who don't
know, Gong Fu brewing is the style of brewing that is used throughout the Far East, and
it is simply the best way to get a proper extraction from your tea leaves. It involves
using smaller teaware - somewhere in the region of between 70 to maybe 180 or 200 ml. It involves
using a lot more leaf to water ratio, and brewing for a matter of seconds over multiple
infusions. For those of you who don't do Gong Fu brewing i really, really recommend that
you start trying to do some Gong Fu brewing.
Honestly, for some teas it is the only way that you can really appreciate the complex
nature, and extract all the aromatics of the leaf. It is [also] the only way that you can
explore how the leaf develops as the water enters the leaf over many infusions. So let's
begin. How do you know how much leaf to use? The more leaf that you use, the richer the
tea is in terms of taste, in terms of texture, and the more infusions you can do. Is it possible
to have too much leaf? Absolutely. It would be difficult to do, but it's possible. We're
going to be flash-brewing here, [and] when you're flash-brewing it's going to be a matter
of seconds, [so] if you put so much leaf in that by the time the water hits the leaf and
you've put a lid on the gaiwan or the teapot and you've decanted it, in those few seconds
if the tea has been extracted too strong then you've used too much leaf. It would be quite
a difficult thing to do. In general, the more leaf you use, the better - and I’m not just
saying that because I’m a tea seller.
If you know that you are [only] going to be available to drink tea for a few infusions
then you may want to reduce the amount, because as i said, the more leaf you use the more
infusions you can do. So you [obviously] want to be economical with your brewing styles.
Okay. I'm going to bring the camera around, and we're going to go through each type of
tea, and I’m going to give you my tips on how much leaf to use. All of the figures that
I’m going to be giving you today are grams per 100 ml pot. What you need to do is get
yourself a nice, accurate measuring scale that can measure down to 0.1 grams. Then you
need to find out the volume of your pot, or gaiwan. The easiest way to do that is to just
fill an empty pot with water, decant that water into a measuring jug, and then you can
see exactly what the volume is. Now don't forget that you're not actually going to be
brewing with that amount of water, because the leaf itself is going to be taking up some
of that volume.
If you take the volume of your pot - let's say it's 180 ml - then you would just take
the figures that i'm giving you and multiply by 1.8. If it's a 200 ml pot then you'd multiply
by 2.0. If it's a 150 ml pot you'd multiply by 1.5, etcetera. Let's begin. We're going
to start with green tea, because green tea is made from the young leaves. The young leaves
are the richest in terms of the amount of catechins and other aromatics in the leaf.
Therefore, you don't need as much. So green tea is your lowest amount. I would recommend
[that] a good starting point for green tea is between 3.0 and 3.5 grams per 100 ml pot
or gaiwan. If you have more dense tea like this Long Jing here, which is flat and dense,
then i would be using something in the region of 3.5 grams. If you have more light tea [leaves],
like this then i would be using about 3.0 grams.
Now that may sound counter-intuitive, but if you imagine that you want to take, let's
say, 100 leaves, a hundred leaves of the lighter tea would weigh less than 100 leaves of the
more dense tea. So the lighter the tea, generally, the less leaf you use. This is 3.0 grams,
and this is 3.5 grams. You can see, visually, the difference in terms of the density. Now
if you have a super-light tea, for example a Hou Kui, like this. This is Hou Kui, [which]
is a beautiful Anhui [province] green tea. This is very, very light - super light. I
would be looking at even less, [like] something in the region of maybe about 2.0 to 2.5 grams.
But this is a very unusual tea. For the most part, [for] all green teas you'd be looking
at between 3.0 and 3.5 grams of tea per 100 ml pot. Okay. Next up is white tea. White
tea is made with young leaves, but it's also usually made with buds.
So, for white tea we go from 3.5 to 4.0 grams of tea per 100 ml pot, or gaiwan. Again, I’d
be looking at the density. This white peony here is a little more fluffy, [and] a little
bit lighter, than the silver needle here, and therefore i would be using a little bit
less tea compared to the silver needle. A good starting point [is] 3.5 to 4.0 grams.
Okay, next is black tea. Black tea, again, is made with the young leaves and buds, and
so therefore requires a little bit less tea [leaves] than you other teas. I would be sticking
to between 4.0 and 4.5 grams. So we're moving up in 0.5 [gram] increments here, [and here
that would be] 4.0 and 4.5 grams per 100 ml pot.
Next up we have oolong teas. Because oolong teas use larger leaves - they use third and
fourth leaves - those leaves have less concentration, and therefore you need a little bit more leaf.
For oolong teas i'd be going between 4.5 and 5.0 grams per 100 ml pot, or gaiwan. Again,
we're increasing it by 0.5 grams, so 4.5 to 5.0 grams, depending again on density. This
eastern beauty here is a lot lighter and fluffier, so I’d probably be looking at around 4.5
grams, but for the Dan Congs, and the Wuyi Ya Cha’s I would be looking at around 5.0
grams. Next up is PuErh tea. For PuErh tea you have the cooked PuErh tea here. This is
a shou cha. Then you have some raw PuErh tea here. For PuErh tea i think it is a very standard
five grams. From what i have experimented with 5.0 grams is the right amount for PuErh
tea per 100 ml pot or gaiwan. So 5.0 grams of PuErh tea.
Last, but not least is your ball-rolled oolongs. Ball-rolled oolongs are obviously more dense,
and therefore heavier, and i would recommend somewhere in the region of 7.0, and maybe
up to 7.5, grams of ball-rolled oolong per 100 ml pot, or gaiwan. If you are brewing
western style then i would recommend, [again as] a good guide [or] starting point, would
be to divide all of the numbers that I’ve just given you by about 5 or 6. That will
give you the amount to use per 100 ml if you are brewing western style. That is all you
need to know.
I hope that these guidelines make sense, and I’ll put them in the description [section]
below. Please remember that every tea is different, so this is just a starting point. With these
tips i hope that you will be able to make an educated guess - just by looking at the
leaf - on how much tea to use to Gong Fu brew successfully for a rich, flavourful, and delicious
brew. That's it Teaheads. If you made it to the end of this video then please give [it]
the thumbs-up. Check out our YouTube playlists and let us know if there are any videos that
you would like us to make. If you're ever in London then come visit us in Camden to
say "hi!" and taste our wares. If you have any questions or comments then please fire
them over. Other than that, I'm Don Mei from Mei Leaf. Thank you for being a part of the
revelation of true tea. Stay away from the tea bags, keep drinking the good stuff, and
spread the word, because nobody deserves bad tea. Bye!
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How Much Tea for Gong Fu Brewing?

385 Folder Collection
Ronnie Jung-Yu Lin published on November 4, 2016
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