Stuff I Like: The Breville Automatic Tea Maker

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Stuff I Like: The Breville Automatic Tea Maker

Today I’m going to introduce a new column, which will appear in the blog from time to time—no particular schedule—and it’s exactly what the title says it is: Stuff I Like

From time to time I find a book, a kitchen device, a food product, a service …. that I really think is great. So far, these have all been products or services or foods or books to which I have absolutely no connection—just stuff I’ve found on my own, not even stuff we sell on my website… just, well, stuff I like that I think you might like too. (If in future columns I ever talk about a product to which i have a financial or business connection, I will tell you in advance!)

So here’s the first “edition” of the column. Short and sweet. I’ll tell you about some device (or service, or food, or product) that has really made my life easier or that I really think is terrific, and if that’s of interest to you, great, you can check it out on your own.

So for my very first “Stuff I Like” column, I’ve chosen one of my favorite new kitchen gadgets: The Breville Automatic Tea Maker.

Tea is the healthiest beverage in the world next to water, and I drink it every day. But I never felt like I was getting the real tea “experience”. I didn’t care all that much since I drank tea for the health benefits, so I figured getting a good, reliable brand of tea in a teabag and holding it under the hot water dispenser was good enough. But I’d been to enough restaurants to know that serious tea people laugh at that. Making tea the right way means different temperatures for different types (green, black, oolong and white all brew optimally at different temperatures) and for different times (ditto).

My Breville Automatic Tea Maker solved the whole problem. My friends—as well as my darling Michelle– laughed at me for buying it. They pointed out that’s it’s not exactly difficult to throw a teabag in a cup or boil some water with a tea immerse. That’s true, of course, but the whole point is that if you want tea the way it’s supposed to be, tasting the way it’s supposed to taste and with the optimal amount of all those tea polyphenols, you’ve got to brew it right, and that’s what this bad boy does. It’s like the difference between a freshly brewed cup of coffee at Coffee Bean and a cup of instant Sanka.

Using it is pure simplicity. You put one scooper of tea leaves in the little “brew basket” for every cup you want. Then, on the control panel, you choose the type of tea: green, black, oolong, white, herbal or “custom”. Then you hit “Tea” and you wait. Period. It couldn’t be simpler. The teamaker boils the water to the right temperature, then, when the temperature is perfect, it lowers the basket into the water, keeps it there for just the right number of minutes, raises the basket back up and makes a little “beep” to tell you the tea is done. Then it keeps the pot warm for another hour. How easy is that?

The controls automatically set the time and temperature to what’s ideal. For example, the perfect combination of brew temperature and time for green tea is 175 degrees for 3 minutes; for black tea it’s 212 degrees for 2 minutes. Right before you hit the “Brew” button, you can choose the strength you want by selecting “mild”, “medium” or “strong”, which adjusts the time (not the temperature) accordingly. You get a perfect cup of tea every time, and the machine even keeps the brewed tea warm for you.

This machine joins my Breville juice extracter on my kitchen counter, and I use it every day. It’s a great investment in your health. When you have this machine, you’ll never have a reason not to drink tea all day—it makes making tea easy and fun.

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  1. Carol March 5, 2013 at 5:53 am - Reply

    Is using a Juice Extracter as good as using a Vitamix? With the Juice Extractor you are leaving all the good stuff behind. A machine like the Vitamix gives you all the good fiber so you get all the fruit or vegetables you put in there. What are the advantages to a Juice Extractor?

    • Dr. Jonny Bowden March 19, 2013 at 1:12 pm - Reply

      A juice extractor gives you tons of vitamins and minerals and all the other good stuff that’s in the veggies and fruits that you juice, but it does not give you the fiber and pulp. A vitamix or NutraBullet does. However, Robert Lustig, in his new book, “Fat Chance” questions whether you even get all that much fiber in the Vitamix-type appliances; he claims– probably correctly– that once pulverized, the fiber is broken down and not as effective. The bottom line, for me, is that both are good, both provide a ton of nutrients, and you should probably be eating as many veggies (and some fruit) as you can to get the whole food/ fiber AS WELL as the juices.

  2. Mecala October 6, 2016 at 10:20 pm - Reply

    Hi Dr. Bowden,
    Great article on the Breville Tea Maker! I agree with you 100% on how great this “gadget” is. Those who don’t love, appreciate, and understand tea will never understand our healthy obsession with it. It has made a huge difference in my enjoyment of tea also. Temperature is everything!
    I also enjoyed your response to Carol because I have an ongoing difference of opinion with a friend who swears by his juicing machine (a centrifugal juicer) and I tell him that I love my mighty little NutraBullet and feel it helps me to accomplish the same as his fancy machine, lol! I’m sending him this link 🙂 Thanks again.

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