It’s summer in Ontario, Canada and the days are long, hot and often disgustingly humid. That means cool tea is all the rage. However, iced isn’t the only way to cool your tea down. Cold brewing is a great way to infuse tea into everything from water to milk to lemonade to wine. The sky is the limit and with these cold brew bottles from Amazon, cold brewing is SO EASY!
Prior to owning this kind of bottle, I used to add tea to water bottles and when I was ready to drink them, I’d have to get a filter or gravity steeper to strain out the blend. That meant getting multiple things dirty and often creating a lot more waste than necessary. Then one glorious day Bird and Blend Tea Co had a great sale and a free shipping deal which made this type of bottle from them affordable for a Canadian. It arrived and I was in love because the filter in the lid made enjoying my cold brew so simple. No additional pieces to get dirty, just pour and go. Plus, the wine bottle-like lid shape made pouring a breeze.
Unfortunately, I’m a bit of a butterfingers and the bottle from Bird and Blend met a sad end when I dropped it and it shattered. I was spoiled though and couldn’t be without my cold brew bottles. Ordering from Bird and Blend wasn’t an option between exchange rates, shipping, and the price. That is why I was so happy when I found the same bottle on amazon.ca! And not just the same bottle, but I also found it in a smaller size and a larger size (which was plastic!). I bought all three sizes and have been cold brewing up a storm ever since.
Like I said, the bottles make cold brewing so easy. Just drop in the tea, top it with a liquid and wait for it to infuse. When you’re ready to drink, just pour it out and you’re ready to drink. The filter also separates from the lid making for easy cleaning of each piece.
In the spirit of full disclosure, I do have two minor complaints. Complaint #1 is that depending on the size, these only come as glass bottles and if you’re anything like me, you could end up breaking them. And complaint #2 is that the filter is not as fine as the filters I’m used to so some tea particles might sneak through and end up in your glass. With that said, these cons don’t even come close to the pros of these bottles. Plus, if you’re an Amazon Prime member, getting your hands on these is just a few clicks away!
Want to Know More About This Bottle?
Leaf Type: Teaware
Where to Buy: Amazon
**please note, by purchasing this item through the above picture- you will be participating in the SororiTea Sisters Amazon Affiliate program and help support SororiTea Sisters’ mission to support tea companies**
I was lucky to receive a Primula Layla Teapot and flowering tea set from a friend The Primula teapot features all-glass construction, even the brewing basket is clear. It has an impressive capacity, making it perfect for sharing a blooming tea session with a few friends.
The flowering tea set came with blooming tea balls, which make good use of the transparent, glass-bodied teapot. I’m not sure which flavor of blooming tea was included, as it lacked a label, but I suspect it is their house blend jasmine bloom.
This is the first blooming tea I’ve actually conducted myself. Previously I’ve always been viewing at someone else’s tea party. Now that I have a teapot so suited for blooming teas, I’ll have to try this type of tea more often.
On an afternoon where I needed some zen, I brewed up a pot of hot water and dropped in the tea ball. As the water soaked into the leaves, they slowly peeled back, like a hand opening its fingers. The process did take a few minutes and I found myself impatient at first. As I relaxed, I found I was surprised how much the bloom was changing in each moment, until we finally reached the unfurling of the pink, center blossoms.
I poured a small cup of the tea to sip on while the bloom continued to relax its leaves. The tea brewed up a golden color, clear and bright, making the blossom look sunlit from every angle. The tea tasted mainly of jasmine, but had a surprisingly earthy undertone almost like the sweet-floral notes of cacao or dark chocolate. I like jasmine pearls, but it was nice to have a deeper flavor balance to the light, flowery notes.
I sipped on the tea all afternoon and watched the leaves continue to soak until they were saturated with tea. It was a lovely experience and the Primula flowering tea set would make a great gift. I can’t wait to brew more tea in this lovely teapot!
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Green tea/TeaPot
Where to Buy: Primula
Create an unforgettable and extraordinary tea experience with this crystal clear glass teapot and accompanying flowering tea blossoms. The Layla glass teapot and tea set offers a generous 36 oz capacity. Serve up to 9 cups of tea in this stunning clear glass tea set, which offers the perfect window from which to watch the included tea flowers begin to bloom in colorful profusion as they steep. After tea, cleanup is easy because this BPA free borosilicate glass teapot is both microwave and dishwasher safe.
Each tea flower has been exceptionally crafted by artisans in China to create the hand-sewn green tea with all natural tea flowers. The green tea is blended five times with jasmine to emanate an ambrosial floral fragrance. Each package contains 12 different flowering teas along with an illustrated picture and health benefit guide. Choose a pot of Floral Passion, Noble Madam, Oriental Beauty or Camellia Joy. Or watch your cup erupt with Wild Flowers, Gilded Lotus, Lover’s Blossom or Juliet’s Kiss. Other popular flavors like London Fog, Butterfly Floret, Fairy Lily and Summer Bouquet complete your choices in the taste sensation. Try all twelve green tea blends and be amazed at how each bud delivers a delectable cup of tea and an optical sensation. Each tea blend is packed with healthy anti-oxidants and can be steeped three times giving you over 250 cups in each canister. These tea flowers make an excellent gift for special occasions and are something any tea lover would enjoy.
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
Some of my holiday wishes have definitely come true, with lots of delicious holiday tea blends in my cupboard. I was even lucky enough to get a tea advent calendar this year (mine is from Plum Deluxe). With plenty of festive tea brewing in my mug, my tea dreams now turn towards tea accessories.
I feel like I’m taking more pictures of tea than ever (and tagging them with #365daysoftea). My tea leaves would get to show off their color and shape in a clear glass teapot like this one from Bluebird Tea or this one from Teaposy. There’s always something cozy about my favorite ceramic teapot, but having a clear glass teapot would make my tea shelf more elegant, and make for more eye-catching tea pictures in the new year.
Daruma Good Luck Canister
I was looking into fun tea storage options when I came upon the Daruma Good Luck tea canister— with a face! Apparently these canisters have a tradition where their eyes are blank at the beginning. When you first get the canister, add one eye and set a goal for yourself. When you achieve the goal, you can add the other eye. It’s never too late to learn more about tea-related traditions. As we enter the time for resolutions, setting a goal seems like the appropriate thing to do. Maybe I will get some extra motivation from setting the goal with a Daruma’s eyes.
Fortune Telling Teacup
Fortune telling and tea leaves have a long history, but I wasn’t aware of just how many teacups are made just for that divining purpose. There are some great fortune telling teacups on Etsy. I’m enchanted by the aesthetic of these teacups. Some cups are laid out with playing card designs, others have zodiac symbols, some have mysterious pictographs I don’t recognize, and some of the fancier ones have full illustrations. I would probably need some tea-reading lessons along with the teacups before I can really look into my future and plan ahead for the new year.
Whether or not I’ll be telling fortunes in the new year, I will definitely continue brewing tea!
I’m in love, you guys.
With a teapot. (Okay, also my fiancé. But we’re not talking about him today.)
Let me give you a little background on how I usually brew my tea. Wayyy back in the day when I began to understand that loose tea is generally preferable to pre-bagged (though I’m no purist– especially in a pinch!), I started brewing my loose tea by filling my own bags, or using a mesh tea ball infuser. This went on for a while, but really, I wasn’t getting much more out of my cuppa than from my already-bagged teas. I’d occasionally brew in a teapot, but usually only if I was making a brew for my aforementioned dude and I to drink together, as my teapot made more than I could feasibly drink on my own. Fast forward to the gravity steeper days– better, and oooh, so pretty whilst brewing– but my gravity steeper is plastic, and I generally try to shy away from hot things + plastic. Strike two.
Enter: this pretty little contraption. All glass + stainless steel? Check! (My hippie heart is super happy about this one.) Cute, vintage appeal with its swoopy, rounded base and little bubble-topped lid? Check. The perfect size to brew two small cups (hello, perfect for tea-time-with-fiancé)? CHECK. Alternatively– the perfect size to brew one giant, Mary-sized cup? CHECK AND CHECK.
More bonuses? It’s easy to clean– even my giant-handled scrub brush fits inside– and doesn’t hold the color of the tea after cleaning (which other teaware of mine has a tendency to do), and for a glass teapot, actually holds the heat of the tea well enough that if I come back for a second cup, I don’t have to reheat. Woo hoo!
“If you love it so much, Mary, why don’t you marry it?” Good question, tea-friends. I still plan to marry that dude of mine (and not this teapot, unfortunately), however– I forsee the three of us having many a happy tea-sipping years together to come. One happy, tea-loving family!
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Teaware
Where to Buy: American Gongfu
DURABLE BOROSILICATE LAB GLASS is transparent and crystal clear; safe for use on glass-top and ceramic-top ranges and all newer electric ranges; great for viewing tea color of brewing loose tea, herbal teas and tisanes, and blooming and flower teas. It’s cute but still sturdy enough for daily use and is more heat and shatter resistant than pyrex. You can use it as a small kettle to boil water, or you can pour hot tea over ice for iced tea. Use it on the gas burner, over a flame or candle.
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
When DAVIDsTEA announced the release of their iced tea press, I had mixed feelings about the whole thing. On the one hand, it seemed like a pretty cool take on a french press to easily make iced tea on the go. On the other hand, I have always been told not to squish teas and that is definitely what gets done with this press. Each time new colors are released, I him and haw over whether I want one but could never bring myself to buy one. However, when a friend took me into DAVIDsTEA and told me to pick what I wanted, I went with something I would not buy myself…the iced tea press.
Of course now that I had it, I immediately had to give it a try. The first thing I noticed was how hard it was to remove the inner piece from the outer shell. I took this as a good sign because it meant the seals were tight and thus the press was most likely leak-proof. When it came time to prepare the tea, I used two perfect teaspoons of a fruit tea and poured the hot water up to the specified line on the outer shell, maybe even a little higher. I filled the inner piece with ice, and screwed the lid on top, then I set the inner piece within the outer shell and waited for the tea to finish steeping.
When I began to press the tea, I got a lot of push back. It just wouldn’t stay down. That was probably my fault since I didn’t have the lid opened so there was no where for the air to escape providing space for the tea to replace it. When I removed the lid, it slid with ease but only filled about 3/4 of the way. The rest of the tea remained in the outer shell, moving up the sides and spilling out where the two pieces connect whenever the tumbler is tilted. Needless to say, this didn’t go very well for me on my first try.
Nonetheless, there are still perks. I do think this is an easy way to make iced tea and I don’t have any gravity steepers left in the sink and needing to be cleaned. I also like the fine mesh used to press the tea as it filters out anything and everything. Another positive is that it gives leaf plenty of space to expand. Though that is not necessarily a relevant factor when it comes to fruit teas, it is an important part of brewing proper tea leaves.
Finally, I think if I had the lid open as intended and didn’t pump the tea before getting a proper press, the ratio of hot water and ice would be more balanced, making for the full 16 ounces of iced tea.
Some things I could see being a downfall with this press, other than the leaking I have already experienced is oversteeping as the tea is not fully removed from the hot water. This isn’t really “on-the-go” as you wouldn’t want to carry around the components while they are separated.
Also, you could not really cold brew in this as there is no lid for the outer shell where the tea steeps. Lastly, I worry about the longevity of the seals as they are silicone and I fear they may wear with time.
Ultimately, I can see this being a fun new contraption. I probably need more practice in light of my fail but I think I am up to the challenge. Granted, I won’t be tossing this into my purse and letting it roll around anytime soon but it is definitely an alternative method to using all my gravity steepers for iced teas.
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Teaware
Where to Buy: DAVIDsTea
What if we told you there was an all-in-one gadget to steep, ice AND sip your tea, at home or on the go? Meet the mug that’ll change how we make iced tea forever. Made of BPA-free, durable Tritan™, it makes iced tea prep quick, easy – and ridiculously fun. Just add your tea and hot water, and scoop your ice into the inner compartment. When you’re ready to sip, press it together to instantly ice your tea. No fuss, no muss. Plus its super-fine mesh stops the infusion, so even the most delicate tea won’t be oversteeped. Now that’s refreshing.