Gong-Go Style Flash-Infusion starts with what you’re using to make your tea in. While I based my flash-infusion method on the ancient Gong Fu style, rather than the tiny cups, pots, and gaiwans, Gong-Go uses modern bottom-dispensing infusers that release the tea when placed on a cup. For the active lifestyle, it’s a no fuss, convenient, and fast way to make the perfect cup tea.
This is my current Gong-Go Gear set up. As you can see, I have several infusers, one of them is no longer in production and the other I’m only using for tastings. To protect flavor profiles, I have a different infuser for specific tea types: white/green, oolong, and black.
So where do you start?
The first thing you want to do is get yourself a bottom-dispensing infuser if you don’t already have one. I’ve been using the Tiesta Brewmaster for about three years now and give it 5 stars for durability and ease of use.
Okay, what next?
The Tea Gong-Go Infusion Guide will get you started. Here you’ll find tea leaf quantities, water temperatures, and flash-infusion times. As you can see it starts with the traditional Gong Fu style for loose leaf. I then provide you with recommendations for Gong-Go style water volumes of 8/10/12 ounces and end with Black CTC (cut-tear-curl).
PLEASE NOTE this is only a guide, not a rule – you can find more on tea rules here. This is just a place to start and as I try more teas, it does get updated to provide the best starting points. I recommend 10oz for all infusions to allow the tea room to bloom. The standardize water temperatures will work with most of your teas.
But my water kettle doesn’t have a temperature reading…
An easy workaround to use is a candy thermometer and then listen. Eventually, you will know when your water is ready just by the sound coming from the pot. Be sure to get a thermometer fully encased and not an open-ended glass tube, they steam up. I recommend the type with the metal base. You can see an example towards the bottom of the sidebar or page if you on your mobile.
How do you measure out the tea?
You should start with a pocket scale, but over time you’ll also learn to eyeball. If you go with the tea suppliers suggested volume of leaf, the end cup will be too weak. Remember, with Gong-Go Style, flash-infusion times have been reduced to seconds versus minutes. More tea is needed to get your cup fast. Because the appearance of the dry leaf is a good indicator of quality, I also use a traditional presentation vessel (Cha He) when I measure out my tea. Just place it on the scale, cut its weight out and then add your tea. I’ve placed a pocket scale and Cha He in the sidebar or bottom of the page that you can order from Amazon.
Is there anything else?
Yes, a timer or stopwatch. Most smartphones have one pre-installed and are perfect for Gong-Go. Or you can just always count down one-one-thousand, two-one-thousand etc – interruptions can complicate this though.
When you first get started you also might want a measuring cup to measure out water too. As you become more experienced, you’ll be able to eyeball that as well.
First, measure out 10oz of tap water and pour it into your empty infuser. Note how high the water level reaches and then pour it out. After you add your tea leaves and then hot water, it should be slightly above the line from the previous step. Something else to consider is that tea volume increases on the first infusion as the dry leaf re-hydrates itself; for any preceding infusions, the water line should even higher (if the second infusion is too strong, you did not add enough water and take leaf bloom into account).
Of course, you can always use a measuring cup for consistency. When working with a new tea, I always do. Over time, it will become natural and easier as you familiarize yourself with Gong-Go.
By following the Gong-Go Flash-Infusion Guide, you can have a perfect cup of tea in 6 easy steps:
Bring water to the correct temperature
Measure out the tea
Place tea in the infuser
Set your timer
Add water and start timer
Dispense into your favorite cup or teapot