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

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.

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