This Tea Maker Costs $400, And People Are Buying It


By Cooking Panda

I don’t know about you, but in my day, making tea was as cheap and simple as boiling water and pouring it into a mug.

In today’s age of touch-screen, robot-powered, military-grade coffee makers and juicers, though, making a humble cuppa can require a tea-infusing machine that costs $400 and a full square foot of precious counter space.

Such is the case with Teforia’s brand new brewing device, the Teforia Leaf. A so-called “personal tea master,” it wants to take everything you thought you knew about tea and toss it to the wayside.

It is somehow cheaper than the “Classic” version, which will set you back $1,000. (???)

How does it work? Pour tea leaves into the device’s “infusion globe,” press a start button and watch in unprecedented awe as the tea goes through “several micro-infusions” that “pull the smoothest, most delightful flavors from the leaves” in four to seven minutes, according to an instructional video on Teforia’s site.

If you’ve spent any part of your life worrying that you’ve never truly known a tea, the Leaf’s “intelligent infuser” technology “unlocks each tea’s true character,” boasts the product description on Williams Sonoma.

Aside from the fact that the device costs as much as, like, six single-serve Keurigs (and likely does not qualify as a kitchen necessity), it also requires that you purchase and use only Teforia brand tea pods, or “Sips.” Those don’t come cheap, either, ranging from $1 to $6.50 each.

But I shan’t lie, the Leaf’s smart technology does look exceptionally cool. Each time you make a serving of tea, you scan the Sip’s lid on the machine’s leaf icon. The machine then recognizes the type of tea and prepares it with the ideal water temperature and brewing time, programmed by “tea masters and artisan growers.”

I may be a somewhat intelligent person, but I know I don’t know the exact degree at which I should heat water for my favorite Teavana Youthberry tea.

As far as being green, Teforia earns some applause. The Sips are completely recyclable and 90 percent compostable. But there’s a catch! You must separate the pod into three parts, mail only the lid back to Teforia, throw the liner in the recycling and give the container to some eco-friendly neighbor who composts. Whew. I can already feel my tea-induced caffeine high wearing off at the thought of all that work.

Is it at least dishwasher safe? No! The carafe is made of borosilicate glass, for Pete’s sake, and must be cleaned with a special microfiber cloth.

The Teforia claims to brew perfect tea, but not all who use it are impressed — even those who really know their tea. A “literal British person” did a blind taste test and thought Tazo Earl Grey was significantly better than the Earl Grey Sip, she wrote in a Gizmodo article.

If you’re convinced that your trusty kettle is a thing of the past, purchase the Teforia Leaf here for $399. The deal includes the machine, a variety box of 15 Sips, a water filter and cleaning supplies.

Render Media is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by linking to Amazon. Our product recommendations are guided solely by our editors. We have no relationship with manufacturers.

Sources: Teforia (2), Williams SonomaGizmodo / Photo credit: Pixabay

Tags: expensive products, Tea, tea maker, Technology, teforia
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If Normal Alarms Don’t Wake You Up, This One That Makes The Sound Of Mom’s Cooking Will (Video)


By Cooking Panda

Alarm clocks may be effective at startling you out of slumber, but unlike the smell of coffee brewing or bacon sizzling, they do little to lure you out of bed.

That’s why Japanese company Nanka created an alarm clock to wake you up with the sound of mom’s cooking (video below).

Before you get too excited, no, the clock doesn’t emulate the aroma of fresh pancakes or scrambled eggs. But it does emit the sound of chopping and the sensation of steam, according to Munchies.

The Jikkalarm looks nothing like a clock; it’s a wooden cutting board topped with a knife and a faux bowl of miso soup. It also doesn’t ring. Instead, the knife begins to chop against the board, and a mister blows steam over the soup and in the direction of the sleeper. That way, it feels just like steam from hot broth is wafting at your face.

Say you’re used to mom’s expert chopping: quick and steady. Set the alarm on “mom mode,” and the knife will chop just like she does. If irregular knife motions sound more like home, there’s also a “newlywed mode” to mimic novice chopping sounds.

According to the video below, you can operate the clock from the convenience of your phone.

The sensations of a fresh Japanese breakfast to tempt us out of bed each morning? Sign us up. There’s just one problem: the knife is real, real knives are sharp and having a blade so close to your head and hands when you’re groggy could be slightly dangerous.

Or as Munchies puts it, “alarming.”

Jikkalarm is for now just a prototype, so it could go through some changes for improved safety before possibly becoming available for purchase. And maybe, we hope, Nanka will figure out how to make the steam smell like miso soup.

Source: Munchies / Photo credit: Stacy Spensley/Flickr

Tags: alarm, alarm clock, cooking, japan, miso soup, Technology
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Stick On This Temporary Tattoo To Find Out How Drunk You Are


By Cooking Panda

It’s not the prettiest tattoo, but you could say what it lacks in looks is made up for in purpose. It’s a potential life saver.

It’s a temporary, wearable patch, developed by engineers at the University of California San Diego (UCSD), that tests your sweat for blood-alcohol concentration, according to Munchies.

Attached to the patch is an electronic board that sends the sweaty data to mobile phones via Bluetooth within 15 minutes.

You won’t have to chug a beer and run a lap to perspire enough for the tat’, either; the patch releases a sweat-inducing drug called pilocarpine, which allows the device to measure “sensible sweat,” or sweat seen on the skin.

This kind of sweat, the engineers explained, gives a more accurate, real-time blood-alcohol concentration than “insensible sweat,” which happens before it appears on the skin and can be two hours behind the correct blood-alcohol reading.

While other wearable technologies can detect blood-alcohol concentration, UCSD’s is reportedly the first to measure sensible sweat.

The best part? It works. The team tested the tattoos by attaching them to nine volunteers and reading their blood-alcohol concentration before and after they had a beer or glass of wine, according to their findings published in the ACS Sensors journal on July 12.

Movement, as well as bending and shaking the patch, didn’t impact the volunteers’ results. The device may indicate that you’re too drunk to function, but it won’t stop your dance party. 

The technology developers’ main hope for the device is that it keeps drunk people from driving.

“Lots of accidents on the road are caused by drunk driving,” said UCSD nanoengineering professor Joseph Wang, who worked on the project, reports the UC San Diego News Center. “This technology provides an accurate, convenient, and quick way to monitor alcohol consumption to help prevent people from driving while intoxicated.”

The tattoos could also be used by doctors and police officers as a more accurate and non-invasive way to calculate blood-alcohol concentration.

Measuring how drunk someone is usually requires pricking a finger, and breathalyzers can give faulty numbers. Someone’s breath right after having a drink, for example, would suggest a blood-alcohol content higher than it really is. Those who live above the law might also know that gurgling mouthwash can trick breathalyzers into detecting a lower alcohol level.

The engineering team is now working on a device that will continuously measure alcohol levels for 24-hour periods.

Away with that bulky breathalyzer. It’s time to get tatted.

Sources: UC San Diego News Center, MunchiesACS Sensors / Photo credits: UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering/FlickrACS Sensors

Tags: BAC, blood alcohol, science, Tattoo, Technology
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