The Gaiwan

One of the most elegant ways to steep tea is also one of the simplest. The gaiwan (lidded bowl) consists of three separate pieces, a bowl, a lid, and a saucer. It is the perfect tool for any Chinese or Taiwanese tea. The bowl holds the tea leaves. The lid retains heat, and acts a strainer. The saucer makes it easy to handle the hot bowl and lid. 

Gaiwan are typically pretty small, but the intention is to steep the tea multiple times. This is done by steeping the tea and pouring it off, and then adding fresh water to repeat the steeping process. Here are some recommended recipes that will work for most styles of tea:

Oolong Tea
5-7 grams of tea
210°F water
60 seconds per infusion
repeat 5-7 times
Green Tea
3-5 grams of tea
180°F water
90 seconds
repeat 2-3 times
Black Tea
4-6 grams of tea
210°F water
20-90 seconds
repeat 4-6 times