Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Tea Geek Strikes

I thought I'd share with you some of the fun tea trivia I've learned in these last few years of being way too obsessed with tea. Maybe some of these facts will help someone out there try something new, or maybe it's stuff you already know. Please feel free to add anything you think I may have missed to the comments section.

1. To enjoy a stronger cup of tea add more tea into the cup. Do not steep tea longer, as most tea can become quite bitter, with a few exceptions most tea gets steeped for around 2-5 minutes.

2. What we call black tea in the western world they call red tea in Asia (though it will continue to be called black tea on my blog). Their black tea is called pu-erh which is red tea that's been fermented. It's often packaged in bricks or small individual portions wrapped in paper, it's highly caffeinated and tastes a bit like dirt. Not my favorite.

3. It was rude to let your spoon touch the edge of the cup when mixing in milk and sugar. I personaly find the sound rather soothing.

4. Teabags were invented in America. Traditional paper tea bags are often used to disguise sub-par tea and the tea found in those bags is often tea dust. If you are going to stick with bags look for silk bags with plenty of room for the tea leaves to unfurl.

5. There are many different kinds of tea but they are all from the same plant Camillia Sinensis and whether you get white or black tea depends on how you treat the leaves. Where the plant is grown also has a bit to do with how it will taste, for instance black Ceylon, and black Yunan are grown in different parts of the world and taste quite different.

6. Tea leaves are a natural mosquito repellant.

7.   The worlds most expensive tea is an Oolong called Tieguanyin and costs around 3,000.00$ for about 2 pounds.

8.  Tea can help prevent tooth decay and gum disease.

9. Herbal teas are not actually tea since they don't by definition have any tea leaves in them. Many people prefer them as a relaxing beverage, and with a wide variety of flavors there is something for everyone.

10. 5 out of 6 North Americans drink tea. Take that coffee!