OK. I lied. THE best teapot.
ONE pick for a a great teapot. This is based solely on taste not on gussied up prettiness.
I didn’t set out to lie, I promise.
Why did three shrink to one?
Because the first one we tried was absolutely the best teapot we have ever used. I mean ever. Once you taste perfection there just really is no reason to go beyond that — particularly when the cost of the best is low.
We have been searching for a replacement teapot for about five years — ever since we broke the lid to our beloved Haviland Chambord teapot. Not only was it beautiful, elegant, and a joy to use, it made the best tea we had tasted up to that point in our lives. The problem was, we didn’t realize until we broke the lid that the pot was also expensive. We simply were not willing to pay today’s replacement cost for the Haviland china teapot. We like tea. Just not that much.
But the taste of paper tea bag water was simply not something we were willing to endure. Plain hot water tasted better than that paper taste to us. So we tried a whole string of tea-making stuff. Each one was messy. And none of them matched the taste of that fine old china pot we had grown used to.
AND THEN WE FOUND THE SECRET!
We ordered a Bodum Assam French Press teapot. We used our favorite loose leaf black tea Mariage Freres (available on Amazon if you aren’t in France). And we brewed the ideal 3 grams of tea to 8 oz of water ratio at the perfect temperature for black tea of 210 degrees F and let it steep for the perfect 2 1/2 minutes.
And lo and behold, it gave us the best cup of tea we ever had.
Bodum’s Assam Teapot is simply the best teapot we have found. Hands down. Best.
With a big fat period.
And the cherry on top is that it is super easy to clean — which is huge for teapots. Oh, and it’s under $30.
Unlike their French Press coffee pots, the Bodum tea press has a metal infuser that is easily removed after the optimal brewing time so you don’t have to transfer extra tea to a thermal pot. The pot is the perfect size for a standard tea cozy so it is easy to keep extra tea warm for leisurely enjoyment.
The metal insert for the loose leaf tea does imparts no metallic taste at all — and believe me, we are sensitive to that. You can easily take the diffuser out of the pot, dump the used tea into your compost bin, then give it a quick rinse. The emptied diffuser can even go through your dishwasher. And so can the borosilicate glass teapot.
You can find the whole line of remarkable tea presses from Bodum on the above link. And most of them are 30% off regular price right now. You can buy the same pot on Amazon, but you won’t get the sales price like you will if you order directly from Bodum. Once you click on this link, go to Tea at the top of the page, then click Tea Press & Pots below that. You will find a wide variety of tea presses like the ASSAM pot we purchased. There is even a wide assortment of lid colors to choose from.
The right temperature makes a world of difference in tea.
The optimal temperature for brewing coffee is 195-202 F. But the temperature to brew tea is different.
For Black Tea, you use water at 210 F and steep the tea for 2-3 minutes.
For Herbal Teas, the optimum varies depending on the specific herb or herbs, but typically you use water at 210 F and brew the tea for 2-3 minutes.
For Oolong Tea, use water between 176-185 F and steep for 2-3 minutes.
For Green Tea, it is 167-176 F water for 1-2 minutes.
And for the rare and tender White Tea, use 149-158 F water and steep for 1 1/2 minutes.
Having a water heating tool in your kitchen that can give you a variable control of precise temperatures greatly enhances your tasting experience unless you just really like the dip-the-thermometer-into-the-boiling-water-and-then-wait-and-then-do-it-again-after-it-cools-some-more-and-repeat-several-times game, which we don’t.
You can read our review on the best electric tea kettles here. Our Bodum Electric Water Kettle continues to deliver consistent exact temperature — with all the key opitmal temperature settings easily seen. And it even has a hold-temperature function that we love.
(You can find our Bodum Electric Variable Temperature Water Kettle on Amazon usually for just under $90, but we suggest you go directly to Bodum through this link with the “Shop Now” button instead and scroll down to the Bodum Bistro Electric Kettle with Temperature Control because the last time we checked, our water kettle was still on sale through the Bodum direct site at for a little over $60.)
Keeping your second cup of tea warm is important.
You can find our favorite handmade cotton tea cozy in this classic blue & white paisley on Amazon for under $12. Or if a more light-hearted look is your style, you might like this Madeleine Floyd Birdsong tea cozy from Ulster Weavers on Amazon for around $16 or the delightfully whimsical Dotty Sheep tea cozy on Amazon, also from Ulster Weavers, for just under $20. All three are machine washable, a delight to touch and display in your kitchen. They do a great job at keeping remaining tea in the pot warm until you drink it.
And if you want to try a tad bit more “exotic” tea instead of our favorite black French Breakfast Tea, we suggest the St. Valentine Red from Tzar Nicholas II teas available on Amazon. Reportedly the favorite tea of Nicholas II’s wife the Tzarina Alexandra, this tea is top quality black tea deeply infused with rose and other flower petals blended with a variety of aromatic medicinal herbs. Unlike most black teas, the tea company says the optimum brewing temperature is 212 F steeped from 5 to 7 minutes. (We use the Black Tea temperature of 210 F for 2 1/2 minutes for it — but we suggest you experiment to find your personal ideal.) We find this an excellent mid-afternoon tea even though we prefer French black for breakfast.
So Frenchly is both an Amazon Affiliate and a Bodum Affiliate.
You can read our Affiliate Policy here.
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