ENGLISH TEA TRADITION

Tea had become established as the fashionable drink of the European upper-classes and this trend was to be introduced to Britain when, in 1662 the Portuguese princess, Catherine of Braganza, was married to the British King, Charles II. Catherine had established tea as her preferred temperance drink and thus created a social acceptance amongst the aristocracy and made tea an 'en vogue' choice in the Royal Court.

The Portuguese princess, Catherine of Braganza, the wife of the British King, Charles II introduced tea to Britain. It was her who made the tea drinking tradition fashionable amongst the British aristocracy. Gradually tea was established as an important element of the British culture, tradition and … trade.

English tea – tradition and experience

The existence of a Chinese tea ceremony is well-known everywhere. Yet there is a similar custom in Britain. Traditionally tea is prepared according to several rules:
The tea should be filled with fresh water – to ensure the necessary amount of oxygen for the tea leaves.
It is necessary to boil water until the rolling boil, otherwise the tea will not infuse properly.
The teapot should be rinsed with the hot water, the water is poured out and then dry tea leaves or a tea bag are placed into the tea pot; then we pour a new potion of the boiled water over the leaves. Then we allow the tea to brew for 2-5 minutes. Once tea has gained the appropriate strength, we may draw the tea bags out of the tea pot. According to the rules, the host/hostess of the ceremony offers the guests milk and sugar. The capacity of the tea pot should be sufficient to serve all guests. Hot water could be added into the tea pot but one should never add it directly into the cup.

Tea in the United Kingdom today

Tea is the most popular drink in the UK. 84% of its population consume it on a daily basis, where 96% use tea bags and in 98% of cases they add milk into tea. An average Briton drinks around 900 cups of tea per year.

Tea is also an important drink for the Britons at work. In the past there was a special job called Tea Lady – those were ladies responsible for brewing tea for the employees. These days workers simply drink tea brewing tea bags of from the drink dispensers. Although the modern working arrangements slightly changed the tea drinking format, nevertheless the 20-minute break for lunch for which every worker is entitled, is called a tea break. They even drink tea in the army; although a drink which is called GunFire is served there with addition of rum.

The afternoon tea drinking tradition (at 17:00) gradually disappears due to changes in the working schedule of the British. Nevertheless the tea remains very popular and there are special Tea Rooms in many cities – these are small restaurants which offer the so-called “cream tea” – tea which is taken with a snack– a scone with clotted cream and jam.

1.93 kgs of tea per one citizen per year makes the United Kingdom one of the biggest tea corners of paradise on Earth. Due to the rich tea drinking history and 16 million cups of tea drunk daily, the British tea producers are considered to be the best tea experts in the world. We should rely on the experts in the tea trade – the team of TET trademark.

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