Upon opening our third store, we thought it would be fun to try a product that Bunn had previously been selling only to coffee shops and use it to make tea. Adagio Teas is currently the only tea shop to carry the Trifecta, as the Bunn product is called. The Trifecta has 12 main parameters that you can calibrate on the machine. They include weight, volume, pre-wet, pre-infusion, fill pause, brew time, turbulence on, turbulence off, turbulence power, press-out power, press-out time, and temperature. Most of these are pretty self explanatory, but I’ll expand on a couple of them. The pre-infusion is the percentage of the total amount of water you use just to wet the leaves. The pre-wet is the time it takes to add the correct amount of unheated water to the leaves before brew time begins.

It’s amazing how many settings you can change on the machine. Just one tea can take forever to calibrate. Depending on how fresh the tea is, the taste can be dramatically different. What I love most about the machine is that you’re able to calibrate it such that you can pull out the nuanced flavors of your classic teas. We’re able to take our gyokuro and make it extra buttery and smooth. We’re also able to take our wild strawberry, which is usually very tart because of the hibiscus base, and make you think you are drinking liquid strawberries.

Another advantage of the machine is that most teas are brewed in less time. Our foxtrot is an herbal tea made of rooibos, peppermint, and chamomile. Usually it takes a minimum of 5 minutes to steep. With the Trifecta, we can have it done in 30 seconds because the turbulence allows it to brew faster. This forces you to ask yourself this question: If the machine makes great-tasting teas in less time, why not use it to make all of your teas all of the time? The bad part is that we can only program in 12 or so teas at once. The other bad part is that it cannot make more than 16 ounces of tea at a time, which forces us to sell only small-size cups using the machine. Our 20-ounce cups of tea to go have to be made using more traditional methods. However, I still highly encourage any tea café that’s looking to add something unique for their customers to learn more about the Trifecta by Bunn.