Tea in England: conviviality and good manners
When to drink a cup of tea? Getting English time
Tea is usually taken in the morning: a hot drink awakens, stimulates, and encourages people to start the day; it awakens the spirits and gives appetite. Thereafter, the tea is drunk after meals to aid digestion. Drunk in this way, tea offers many advantages: its properties are to lower brain smoke, refresh and purify the blood.
The English drink tea throughout the day. Some people start a day with at least one cup of tea often taken in bed and accompanied by biscuits and a small jar of milk: this is called “Early Morning Tea.”
After the toilet, the English enjoy another cup of tea during breakfast: it is the “Breakfast Tea.” It is customary to also drink tea at work, during morning breaks (around 11 a.m.) and in the afternoon (around 5 p.m.), and sometimes even at lunch. Let us not forget to quote the famous “Tea break”: the tea break, which until the 1970s was common practice, in factories as in the army.
The “High Tea” (evening tea) is a real meal that can replace dinner. Indeed, a cup of tea is often enjoyed before bedtime, even if today few people are in the habit of drinking tea in the evening. It is for this reason that the Tea Committee of the United Kingdom has recently launched a promotional campaign to encourage restaurants to offer tea at the end of the meal instead of coffee!
The quality of English tea: the different types of tea
In general, the English prefer more full-bodied teas in the morning and lighter teas in the afternoon.
With afternoon tea became more popular and general across the country, Age Co wanted to share some of the best places to enjoy a piece of this delicious British custom. You can reveal the etiquette of afternoon tea from here. #TeaTimeEtiquette
The English prepare tea with blends, full-bodied or renowned for their astringency and which are called “Breakfast Tea,” “Afternoon Tea,” or commonly English blend. This habit of mixing original black teas and dosed according to the time of day dates back to colonial times. Let us quote some names of teas: Darjeeling, Assam, Ceylon, and Yunnan.
In terms of flavored tea, the most famous is undoubtedly Earl Gray. A great English classic, this bergamot flavored tea owes its name to Earl Edward Gray, British Prime Minister for Foreign Affairs from 1830 to 1834. It was he who brought this old Chinese recipe, one day offered by a mandarin and consistent, into fashion to flavor the tea with bergamot.
How to drink tea? Preparation and know-how
Serving tea in England follows a ceremonial – certainly less rigorous than the Japanese ritual – which imposes immutable rites: pour cold milk first into the cup, then boiling tea and finally sugar, which has the advantage of taste it immediately. In addition to the lemon, the English also likes to accompany the tea with an orange slice, which develops the taste and fragrance of the tea.
English tea is prepared according to very scrupulous rules. To obtain a quality drink, follow these five rules:
– Boil the teapot, to warm the tea leaves and allow them to release all their perfume
– Put in the teapot a small spoonful of tea per cup, plus one for the teapot
– Pour simmering water, never boiling, on the leaves
– Let simmer three to five minutes
– Stir and serve