A while back we reviewed a food dehydrator from online homeware retailer Andrew James. The company was so pleased with out verdict (we liked it a lot) that they recently got in touch to see if we wanted to review anything else from their shelves of kitcheny trinkets.
At the precise moment the email shuffled into my inbox queue I was supping on a mug of hot mint tea, flavour squeezed from a shabby tea bag, making me yearn for a proper fresh mint tea like the ones I enjoyed in Morocco a few years ago. It’s not all home grown booze for us. Oh no. We’re just as happy brewing up our garden goodies for a few non-alcoholic drinks too.
After a quick scroll through the Andrew James website, followed by a polite email reply and a few days waiting, the postman* delivered a shiny new tea infuser. And here’s the review…
Brew’ve got the looks
While I like the utilitarian rounded stainless steel look of this tea infusing vessel, my wife was less impressed by its appearance**, wishing I’d picked out something more in keeping with her arty ceramic kitchenware. A brief survey of visitors to the house found most people on my side.
The tea infuser’s working mechanisms are all very straightforward. Beneath the lid is a snuggly fitting fine mesh metal basket with an arced handle for easy removal. Simply place your infusion ingredients within the basket and fill the pot with boiling water. It’ll take any type of loose leaf tea or, like me, you can stuff it with herbs and things from the garden. If you want to try a mint tea give the leaves a gentle scrunch first to set them on their way, and if you want to Moroccan-ise it, add some green tea as well.***
Works to a tea
Everyone knows the most important aspect of any tea pot is how well it pours. I wouldn’t take a mis-pouring, spilly-drink spout for all the tea in China. Thankfully, this one pours to perfection, even allowing for fancy lifting of pot mid-pour for an extended aerating stream of steamy brew. And being made of steal and well sealed it has excellent heat retention. The shallow basket in my 1.5 litre pot shallow means you have to fill with a lot of water to allow for a proper submerged infusion – but this also has its advantages: if it’s a single cup of tea you’re after then simply ignore the pot and dunk the basket in your mug instead. And there’s also an 800ml pot available for those who regularly make smaller brews.
We reckon this is a great infusion tea pot for the price, making perfect cups of tea every time. But check to see if the rest of the family likes the look of it first.
*”Not booze?” asked the Postie? He has delivered so much alcohol to my door that I’ve occasionally crossed his palms with bottles of beer. But now he’s getting cheeky, asking if I can get hold of some of his favourite “Carlsberg Elephant beer because I can’t find it anywhere.” If someone wants to send me some I know someone who will give it a favourable review.
**And it’s very tricky to photograph. Witness reflection of knees in photo above.
***’Proper’ Moroccan mint tea making involves a much-argued about process of steeping, rinsing, more steeping and pouring to precise timings. A quick blend will often suffice