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The Basics: Teaware and Tea Accessories

Teaaware on dark table

I love making tea.  It is so simple: all you need at the end of the day are some tea leaves, hot water and a cup. 

When making our tea, especially in Western dynamics, below are the types of equipment and accessories we typically use.

Tea kettle

Tea Kettle on Stove

A tea kettle is used to heat the water.  This usually done by placing the kettle filled with water over a fire or heating apparatus (like an electric stove) to get the water to the optimal steeping temperature (which is dependent on the type of tea).  As a result, tea kettles tend to be durable and made of materials that can conduct heat well, like steel, aluminum or copper.

Tea pot

Teapot and tea cup set

The teapot is used for steeping and serving the tea.  With tea leaves in the teapot (placed directly in the teapot or contained within a Infuser/Strainer), the hot water from the tea kettle is poured into the teapot, enabling the tea leaves to be extracted.  Once the tea is ready, the teapot is usually what is seen when the tea is poured into a drinking vessel, like a tea cup.  As a result, teapots can have various designs.

Tea cup & saucer

Tea Infuser & White Tea Cup

The Tea Cup is the standard drinking vessel to drink tea.  And the Tea Saucer is the small plate that the tea cup is placed on; this enables easy holding of a hot tea cup as well (and as a perk takes any spillage from the tea cup if you’re a messy drinker).

Tea infuser & strainer

Tea Ball with Tea Leaves on Table

Tea Infusers and Strainers are used to hold the tea leaves while the tea steeps and the tea leaves are extracted of their properties and flavor. For more details about this, check out our article.

Tea Infusers vs Tea Strainers: What’s the difference?

Tea tin/Caddy

Gray Tea Tin

Tea Tins or Caddies are receptacles (e.g. boxes, cannisters, jars) that are used to hold and store tea leaves when they are not in use.

Tea tray

Tea Tray

A Tea Tray is used to hold the teapot, tea cups and other related items when serving.

Tea cosy

Gawdy Tea Cosy

A cover put on a teapot to keep the teapot and tea warm.  For the record, we do not have a pink knitted tea cosy like in the above picture, but more power to you if you can pull this off – get it.

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