Drinks in the era of pod coffee makers and Soylent coffee-meals are modern and efficiency-minded, but oldschool beverages and methods don't have to be difficult. The new Manual Tea Maker No. 1 by Manual, designed by longtime Core77 friend and contributor Craighton Berman, wants to refresh appreciation for the minimalism of tea. Much like their take on pour over coffee has reinvigorated appreciation for process and quality, this impeccably simple system encourages taking just a little more time for your liquid payoff.
The set's three part design takes its cues directly from traditional Chinese gaiwan and tea ceremonies. With quality ingredients at the center, the design aims to maximize the beauty of tea itself and highlight the quality of its flavors with minimal fuss. The set fits in your hand and only uses two materials—borosilicate glass and porcelain—with a satisfying visual impact.
And far from being messy or time intensive, the Manual Tea Maker is quick to use and easy to clean. Double walled glass shows off the color of your steep while insulating the liquid and protecting your hands. The ceramic cap stores heat and then neatly doubles as a straining lid, and triples as saucer if you want to get sculptural.
And that's it. No tea ball to get lost in drawers or mesh sieve to get wet leaves stuck in. Dump out your tired when they're done and start over, or stack attractively for storage… or display. [Bonus: Join Berman for a live-streamed demo and chat about the design of the Manual Tea Maker No 1 tomorrow at 9PM EST]
Tea is a simple beverage and the best teaware leans into its single-ingredient subtlety with the reverence that the drink has commanded for thousands of years. These little sets are inviting to the touch and eye, and I'd be satisfied if other drinkware designers took a single hint from their eco-friendly blend of form and function.
The Manual Tea Maker No. 1 is Kickstarting through August 19, starting at $45 with a set of teas to boot. Manual (and Berman himself) has already successfully produced several satisfying minimalist goods for the home, including the beloved Sharpener Jar, and if all goes well this will be the most recent in the line... and maybe the simplest yet.
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Spouts are a pain in the neck to clean.
While obviously I haven't used the product yet (and I am looking forward to getting mine) Borosilicate glass is pretty strong and the double wall will make it easier to hold. So hopefully it will be easier to use than traditional vessels. THe only possible issue might be if it's too small. I am not sure of the capacity and I hope it's more Western mug size than tea cup size.
What really appeals to me is that unlike strainers and tea balls, which I use now. bowls are far easier to clean and the tea has the room to steep properly.
Cheers Joel! You're totally right about the ease of cleaning and the ability for the teas to open and "breathe". The volume is 6oz, which is smaller than a Western mug—but that said, you can stack multiple infusions for a larger mug. Thanks for the support!
6 oz is pretty small. This isn't asia. There is no reason it should not be a little bigger. Who wants to have to pour several cups to make one cup of tea. And the water will get cold. A larger cup will sell better. Smaller it's More of a toy
Thanks for the support, Core! BTW that second photo (and the main one on the front of the blog) is an old prototype photo—can you swap with the latest photo?