Household crisis

On this, my alleged writing day, I have important business.

Yesterday morning, the teapot broke.

Fortunately I have some emergency teabags to hold me through until I have bought a new one, but this is a big issue. Particularly after my husband served me a cup of tea made from Earl Gray teabags that are at least ten years old, although I should be grateful he didn’t use the teabags that are so awful I reserve them for cleaning purposes (mainly the kitchen floor).

The shopping process has begun. Its appearance, really, is not important. I mean we’re not talking about a romance hero here. Size, however, is (so I guess we are talking about a romance hero after all). I need a large teapot. To me a cup of tea means not one, but several. It must be resilient. My departed teapot, made of metal and glass (with some very dodgy looking solder that I suspect may have been lead-based, acquired at the Indian grocery store that keeps me in Brooke Bond export tea and mangoes) lasted me a couple of years. So it has to be cheap.

And it has to pour well. I have a vintage Royal Doulton  teapot I bought at a yard sale that I called into use yesterday and it was awful–an  English made teapot that didn’t pour!! I’ll give up the gilding any time (besides, if you do want to throw it into the dishwasher, the decision will be made for you). Sadly, when you buy a teapot you can’t always guess how well it’s going to pour.

So here are my top choices so far:

The UK Tea & Infusions Association (check out that site, there’s  a great section on the history of tea, and a counter for how many cups of tea have been drunk so far today in England, currently at well over 128 million. How do they know??) commissioned Bodum to make teapots. The advantages are that they make a 34 oz size and they seem fairly tough.  Bodum introduced the coffee press concept to tea making. Advantages: tough. Disadvantages: Expensive and do I trust the press method??

$_57A fairly cheap ceramic pot with infuser. Advantages: looks pretty, looks as though it will pour ok. Cheap. Large. Disadvantages: I know that if the infuser is not stainless steel as soon as I receive it I will drop it and break it. It happens every time.

And here are a couple of purely silly items. A shark infuser and (oh I want it so much, but I’ll never use it and I know this shape is pretty much unusable),  a Tardis teapot!!!

Are you a tea drinker and how do you like your tea? Teabags or are you a loose woman? (For which terrible pun I thank Bingley’s Teas).




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Sandra Schwab
8 years ago

Is the blue ceramic pot from London Pottery? I’ve got one of those in yellow: stainless steel infuser + pours well. And it looks pretty with my Penguin mug. 🙂

Sandra Schwab
8 years ago
Reply to  Sandra Schwab

PS: I love both loose tea and tea bags. I typically use loose tea when brewing a whole pot, and tea bags when I want to drink only one cup of tea.

Tea Temptress
8 years ago

Tea is my daily habit as well as business. If I may be of help here… The Bodum (not tea press version) will serve you well and worth the money. The ceramic tea pot will be very serviceable too. A tea press is not ideal. It can lead to leaf stewing. Though, it reads as if you prefer tea bags over all so it may not be an issue. The shark infuser is more for fun looks than a way to get your good tea on. There are other tea infusers that will really let your leaf free itself for expression!

I hope this is helpful and if I may be of service in any other tea making way, please let me know!

And yes, I take my tea loose. After all, as we say here in the shop, Jane Austen was a loose woman too!
All good wishes and Happy Sipping!

Janet Mullany
8 years ago
Reply to  Tea Temptress

Thanks, for the advice, and no, I’m a loose woman all the way except when the teapot breaks. The reason I own teabags other than the cleaning ones is that I had to make a minimum purchase to use my credit card for a loose tea purchase!

I’m still dithering, using the second best coffee press which is just fine but the WRONG SHAPE. And this is something I just cannot rationalize (husband thinks I’m nuts).

ki pha
ki pha
8 years ago

I don’t drink tea much but more than I would for coffee, and I never had tea in tea bags…. But I have been to Fortnum and Mason on St. James street in London and that was a dream place to be in for tea and tea pots!

Elena Greene
8 years ago

I am undoubtedly appalling to tea purists, because I’ve never learned to do the loose thing and will drink just about every kind that can be made with a bag.

Someday I will get educated. 🙂

Susan in AZ
Susan in AZ
8 years ago

I’ve bought and used a number of 40-ounce teapots in the last twenty years, and I have just one suggestion: Target. Their online shopping site has many affordable, functional pots in different colors. I’m sure you can find at least one there.

Janet Mullany
8 years ago
Reply to  Susan in AZ

Good thinking! I went to Target today and found one tea pot that was too small and cast iron. But online. Well.

Louisa Cornell
8 years ago

The Brown Betty my Mom brought back from England makes the very best tea ever! I need to get one. I tend to use tea bags most of the time unless I have access to a really good blend of leaves. I have a couple of simple stainless steel ball infusers and they work quite well for me.

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