Product Review: Piao I Travel Buddy Tea Infuser

by Jason on July 18, 2012

in review


It has been over 1 year since I received the Piao I Travel Buddy Tea Infuser 580cc, and I have been quite pleased with the results.

Here are a few observations:

1. I don’t usually go for plastic, but this is high quality polycarbonate. When I spoke with the good people at Piao I last year, they told of how their materials are sourced from Japan and/or Germany. Places were regulations on BPA are strict. Not necessarily so with brands like Kamjove.

2. Speaking of the plastic- it is probably better suited for cold steeping or cold drinks. I’m not worried about melting plastic or leaching. I just mean it can get hot to the touch. If you are going to use with hot beverages be sure to spring for the neoprene jacket.

3. The neoprene jacket is reversible- navy blue one side, camouflage on the other. Perfect for when you just have to chug some wulong on those long turkey hunts. 😉

4. The mesh screen basket at the bottom is good, but has the same flaw as nearly any fine mesh screen in a bottle. Namely, air and water do not always pass freely and easily. Even after filling the bottle with water, it takes some vigorous shaking to free the air bubbles trapped inside the submerged mesh basket. When you are finishing off the last few drops, you may find that the basket has trapped a sizable sip. Frustrating to have to shake or unscrew a lid to liberate that aqua vitae.

5. Depending on the kind of wulong you put in the basket and how strong you like your tea, the basket may not allow enough space for your leaves to unfurl. However, that could be helpful if you are trying to stretch out a few bottles-full from one serving of leaf in a day.

6. It is easy to take apart and clean. Both ends unscrew. The basket is removable. The most difficult part to clean is the inside of the straw. If you don’t want it discolored with tea stain, first try a mix of vinegar and water. If that doesn’t get it, you may have to graduate to bleach and water.

7. It’s light. I like that it doesn’t weigh that much more than a common water bottle. Easy to throw into your bag on the go.

8. It hasn’t leaked on me yet. I haven’t abused it or kicked it down the stairs. I’m just saying that I’ve been able to put it in briefcase or messenger bag -type bags without it soaking everything.

9. I can open and close the snap-button lid with one hand. the straw inside the lid pushes the lid up.

10. Some will say it seems pricey for a German Red Dot design winning, high-grade plastic bottle that is better suited to cooler (not hot) drinks.


Price (as of post): = $36

Sample provided by Piao I.
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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Derek July 18, 2012 at 20:03

Might be perfect for cool brews though I agree that the basket seems a tad small for Taiwanese wulong which are my favorite for cold brewing.

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