Tea is the second most popular beverage in the world after water.
Very little of the world's loose leaf teas today are of the highest quality. Hand-processing, as was done upon its discovery, has been replaced with machinery. Yet it is still possible to find these treasures
Blooming teas, also know as flowering teas, are hand made. Brewing the tea reveals a flower that has been hidden inside.
In 1662, King Charles II of England married the Portuguese princess Catherine of Braganza. The new queen brought with her to England a chest of tea as part of her dowry.
In the 17th century the credit for the invention of "Afternoon Tea" is given to Anna 7th duchess of Bedford. At that time food was served at breakfast and not again until a very late dinner. The Duchess was unable to endure this long time span. She requested her maid to bring her a pot of tea with a little bread and butter and some cake. She soon began to invite friends to join her. Welcome to the birth of "Afternoon Tea".
Why does loose leaf tea produce a beverage that has health benefits? Polyphenols in tea give it antioxidant properties.
A cup of brewed tea typically contains less than half the caffeine of a cup of coffee.
In England there are really two kinds of tea meals. "Low Tea" also called "Afternoon Tea" is served on a low table with a light offering of food such as dainty thin sandwiches and scones. "High Tea" served at a high table or dining room table is a more substantial meal. This would be considered supper in the working class home. Food would include a hot dish, hefty sandwiches, scones, cakes and biscuits. Of course, each of these traditions includes tea, and lots of it.
The United States is the birthplace of "Iced Tea". Today over 80% of tea consumed there is still sold as an iced drink. Americans love their brisk iced tea.
Water quality has a big effect on the taste of all teas. Poor water will result in poor tasting tea no matter how high the quality of the loose leaves you purchase are.
Wu-Long loose leaf tea is actually Oolong loose leaf tea.
In the United States a short interruption in the workday is called a coffee break. In other parts of the world, it is more likely to be a tea break.
The oldest tea ritual is thought to be the Japanese tea ceremony, which dates to the 12th century. Tea drinking developed into a highly formalized social function, and in the 16th century a tea master named Senno Rikyu laid down rules for the ceremony.
In 1823 Tea trees were found to be native of the Upper Assam area of India.
Over time the tea used in tea bags became of the lowest grade of tea.
Tea flushes refer to plucking times Ex: Darjeeling second Flush tea is picked in May/June.
Some beverages referred to as tea are not true tea. True tea comes from the leaves of the camellia sinensis tree or plant. These teas contain caffeine, however because tea also contains theanine caffeine is released in a slower time frame.
Tisanes and herbal teas do not contain caffeine. They also offer health benefits and have been used for centuries to manage illnesses.
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