While a cup of tea can't exactly solve all your problems, it certainly can make working through them easier. Just got an upsetting email from your boss? Always best to respond after brewing a calming cup of chamomile. Need help falling asleep? Grab a sachet of lavender. Tea, it seems, is always part of the solution.
To get the very most out of your tea—both in terms of taste and benefits—having a tea kettle is a must. (Don't tell me you're *gasp* microwaving your tea!) Just like coffee makers and espresso machines, not all tea kettles are created equal. Kyle Stewart, co-owner of The Cultured Cup and one of only 175 certified tea specialists in the entire world, explains that when brewing tea, water temperature matters a lot. This is because some types of tea leaves are more delicate than others and boiling water can damage them.
With a lot of standard tea kettles, you just fill it with water, throw it on a burner, and wait for that baby to whistle; there's no controlling the water temperature. But adjustable electric kettles give you the option to set the temperature—and they typically heat up your water much faster than your stovetop can. But there's one electric tea kettle in particular that Stewart says is the very best: The Fellow Stagg EKG Electric Pour-Over Kettle.
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Fellow Stagg EKG Electric Pour-Over Kettle
Stewart says there are several reasons why this one is the best tea kettle. First, can we just talk about how it doubles as literal kitchen art? Besides being sleek and modern, Stewart says that sexy ergonomic handle actually serves a purpose. "It's weighted, which balances the kettle, making it easier to hold and pour," he says. "Pouring the temperature-set water with this kettle can also be a mindful experience. Unlike larger and heavier kettles, this kettle is comfortable to hold, and the goose-neck spout pours smoothly and slowly." He explains that by pouring mindfully, you're able to concentrate solely on the pour. "This helps eliminate daily stressors and prepare for the calming and focusing effects of the tea," he says.
Then there's the fact that you can precisely control the water temperature. Stewart says this kettle has quite the range to choose from: 104°F to 212°F. "Unlike most other kettles, the unit's 'on hold' setting keeps the set temperature when the kettle is removed from the base. Most other water kettles turn off the set temperature when removed from the base," Stewart says. He also points out that it also has a brew stopwatch that keeps track of the steeping time. This, he says, is just as important as the water temperature because different types of tea require different steeping time lengths.
You can see why he's so passionate about the Fellow Stagg being the best tea kettle out there, right? And to think you were just going to pop your mug in the microwave!
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