A Bit of Tea Advice

Michelle sent this link to me this morning and it is quite enjoyable. The best take away though (in my opinion) is Mr. Orwell’s last rule, which is this:

Lastly, tea — unless one is drinking it in the Russian style — should be drunk without sugar. I know very well that I am in a minority here. But still, how can you call yourself a true tea-lover if you destroy the flavour of your tea by putting sugar in it? It would be equally reasonable to put in pepper or salt. Tea is meant to be bitter, just as beer is meant to be bitter. If you sweeten it, you are no longer tasting the tea, you are merely tasting the sugar; you could make a very similar drink by dissolving sugar in plain hot water.

I’ve probably mentioned this before in previous tea related posts, and while at one time I quite enjoyed sweetening my hot tea, I now am firmly of the opinion that sugar should be avoided at all costs.  Yes, even honey, unless you have a sore throat (in which case the honey can be good).  With ice tea sugar is fine, but to really enjoy a freshly brewed cup of steaming tea you do not want any sweetness.  I think, for those of you who usually take your tea with sugar, that you’ll be surprised at just how complex and compelling a cup of unsweetened tea can be.  And depending on what you choose to drink the variety is vast.  Earl Grey couldn’t be any more different from Green Jasmine tea.  A Darjeeling is a whole different experience than an fresh White tea.  And then of course there is the vastness of different tisanes (aka herbal teas).

I love me some sugar.  Anybody who knows me well knows that I have a very active sweet tooth with a love, especially, of any candy and cake.  But tea is one place I’ve firmly decided does not need the presence of sugar.  Considering how much of the food in our lives is processed and probably loaded with sugar as it is, there is something quite wonderful and simple in an unadorned cup of tea.

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~ by Nathaniel on May 22, 2013.

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