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Thursday, August 23, 2007

Finally, a tea gadget worth buying

Utilitea_kettle_2 For the record, I think most tea gadgets are a waste of money: electric 'tea' maker that costs a hundred dollars, pretty yet pretty useless tea infusers, or - worse yet - iced tea maker made by Mr.Coffee. They are superfluous at best, and at worst entirely ridiculous. Perfect tea making depends on very few variables that are simple to control: water temperature, brewing time, and proper brewing pot with enough room for the tea leafs to unfurl properly. It is also important to remove the leafs immediately after brewing. I've written about it all before: read it before you waste any money on tea gadgets.

Then I came across something that got me to change my mind. It's been a while since I found a tea gadget worth buying, and this one certainly is. It's called UtiliTea, and I found it on Adagio Teas website (via Coolhunting). It's an electric kettle. (You have an electric kettle by now, yes? It boils water much more efficiently than the antiquated stove top kettles. One simply can't be a tea snob without one.) The UtiliTea is not just any old electric kettle, mind you, it has settings that allow you to boil water up to certain temperatures, so that the water destined for green tea can stop at just below boiling and water for black tea will be heated to full, rocking boil, for example.

This is such a brilliant idea I wondered why no one had thought of it before. No more watching the regular kettle so you can stop the heat at just the moment bubbles begin to form, and no more waiting for the water you accidentally let go fully boiled cools down enough so that it wouldn't burn a delicate green tea, like the Kawanecha I drank this morning. Brilliant idea.


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