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Offline velkyn

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tea and tea shops
« on: May 01, 2012, 02:31:46 PM »
I'm looking for some info on just how tea shops are anywhere but in the US.  Here, the majority of tea is consumed by suburbanites who want frou-frou antiques, in "tea parties" which seem to be nothing much more than a parody of Victorian England.  I've looked at the website of the tea shop I think Seppuku mentioned in the coffee-ish thread and thankfully it hasn't a cabbage rose to be seen (and any tea shop that also has a link to Roman re-enactment is aces in my book  :) ).  Not many places other than in the big cities that have anything like that.

and tell me tea drinkers, how is it "supposed" to be made.  I know that probably could start a war. I'm curious, since that I like tea but don't find it amazing, if I'm doing something wrong.   Pretty much I grew up on lipton tea, already sweetened iced tea aka "sweet tea" and had nothing else until I was probably in college.   
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Offline Seppuku

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2012, 02:57:30 PM »
I'd say here tea drinkers are pretty varied. Drinking tea is pretty normal, we probably have it for the same occasions as Americans have their coffee, though sometimes it's coffee here to (my dad always loves his cup of coffee. I think we get peopl like you mentioned too. As for tea shops, the one I linked is pretty much set out like a normal cafe, but they have a specific menu for tea, probably not too different from a coffee shop, except not smelling of coffee or favouring a darker environment,like Costa or Starbucks. Up the road in one of the towns near me there's a tea room, the cups are dainty, floral patterned, the food mostly consists of scones and you're most likely to order a cream tea. Kind makes me think of old ladies going around the vicar's for a cream tea and scones. then there's TeaMonkey, which I go to when I visit Milton Keynes, it's a lot more modern and hip, kinda like an Internet cafe (they actually have tables with iPads on them).

However, most places you can eat serve tea, so there's not a lot of tea shops, usually coffee shops serve tea, it can sometimes taste bad (like from Starbucks) but the independent coffee shops I think do better tea (had a really nice chai in one I went to in Derby.


As for how to drink tea, for me if it doesn't have milk in it it's not tea. And it has to be hot, none of that ice tea malarkey. Some tea tastes great with an infusion of some kind, like Rooibos and cherry, but that's because I love different types of tea, the average person drinks Tetley, Yorkshire Tea, Twinings or something like that, be it black tea, Assam, English Breakfast or Earl Grey, not the fancy crap I buy from specialist tea shops. ;)
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Offline Quesi

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2012, 03:07:21 PM »

As for how to drink tea, for me if it doesn't have milk in it it's not tea. And it has to be hot, none of that ice tea malarkey. Some tea tastes great with an infusion of some kind, like Rooibos and cherry, but that's because I love different types of tea, the average person drinks Tetley, Yorkshire Tea, Twinings or something like that, be it black tea, Assam, English Breakfast or Earl Grey, not the fancy crap I buy from specialist tea shops. ;)

And I'm the exact opposite.  No milk.  I drink green tea, (decaf) with 1/2 teaspoon of honey, at least 10 times a week.   I also really love "red zinger" put out by Celestial Seasonings.  It is very sour, so it gets 3/4 of a teaspoon of honey.

I like "solid" or "creamy" honey that stays on the spoon and doesn't make a mess all over the jar and the cabinet.  I'm not a very good housekeeper, so an ounce of prevention....

For me, curling up with a nice cup of tea is a reward for a project completed or a long day or the fact that my kid is finally asleep.  Sometimes I'll serve tea to company.  I have one friend who expects a cup of tea when she comes over.  But mostly it is a private reward. 

Offline hickdive

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2012, 03:52:36 AM »
and tell me tea drinkers, how is it "supposed" to be made. 

Boil (yes boil!) freshly drawn water in a kettle.
Sluice the teapot out with some of the boiling water to warm it.
Put teabags into teapot (one per person but a minimum of two)
Pour on rest of boiling water.
Let it stand until brewed to taste.
Put milk in cup or mug.
Pour on tea.
Sweeten to taste, if necessary.

There are thousands of vile concoctions masquerading as tea out there; made from herbs or twigs or fruit or goodness knows what else. There are some would-be palatable teas out there rendered vile by awful 'brewing' techniques (anything in a little bag on a string you dunk in a cup of lukewarm water, for example) but real tea is actually very simple.

Visiting the US is a trial if you drink tea several times every day. I'm reduced to bringing (smuggling?) my own tea bags and slumming it by throwing the bag in a mug and pouring on boiling water. Asking for tea in an American restaurant is an exercise in futility.


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Online One Above All

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2012, 03:56:21 AM »
Put milk in cup or mug.
Pour on tea.

What the hell is wrong with you? Tea is tea, milk is milk. Tea and milk DO NOT mix. You call those teabags "vile", yet you drink something far worse. It's the taste of pure evil, as far as I'm concerned. >:(
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Offline Seppuku

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2012, 04:58:53 AM »
What kind of insane person drinks tea without milk???  &)
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Offline hickdive

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2012, 05:02:05 AM »
What the hell is wrong with you? Tea is tea, milk is milk. Tea and milk DO NOT mix. You call those teabags "vile", yet you drink something far worse. It's the taste of pure evil, as far as I'm concerned. >:(

I believe you are a citizen of the USA, in which case what you know about tea could be written on the back of a postage stamp, in crayon, chubby crayon. ;)

Real tea is made with milk, pretend tea (for example, things with added 'flavours') isn't.

There's a simple test for what is real tea and what is not. Would the WRVS serve it at a major incident? If not then it is not real tea. :P
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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2012, 05:07:09 AM »
I believe you are a citizen of the USA, in which case what you know about tea could be written on the back of a postage stamp, in crayon, chubby crayon. ;)

Portuguese. If you know anything about world history, you'll know why that's relevant.[1]

Real tea is made with milk, pretend tea (for example, things with added 'flavours') isn't.

I wasn't aware the Chinese used milk in tea. Please point me to where they did, so I can agree to this.
 1. Hint: Tea was invented in China, not the UK.
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Offline hickdive

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2012, 05:08:30 AM »
Tea:




Not Tea:
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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2012, 05:11:14 AM »
Still waiting for when the Chinese started using milk in tea... Unless, of course, you wish to define "real tea" to suit your claim.
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Offline hickdive

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2012, 05:14:05 AM »
Rockets were invented in China too, does that mean the USA can't claim to know anything about rockets?

I don't see Portugal anywhere on this list either;

http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/foo_tea_con-food-tea-consumption

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2012, 05:16:00 AM »
hickdive, it's rude to keep people waiting. Chinese invented tea. For all intents and purposes, their tea is "real" tea. When did they start using milk in tea? Either post something supporting your claim (which I will appreciate) or simply admit you were wrong (which I will also appreciate). Stonewalling doesn't become you.
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Offline hickdive

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #12 on: May 02, 2012, 05:16:58 AM »
Unless, of course, you wish to define "real tea" to suit your claim.

Of course I do, in much the same way as you dismiss milk in tea.

The difference is that I see this 'debate' as a bit of fun whereas you seem to take it very seriously. I think you should perhaps calm down, a cup of tea (with milk) might help  ;)
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Offline Seppuku

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #13 on: May 02, 2012, 05:17:29 AM »
I believe you are a citizen of the USA, in which case what you know about tea could be written on the back of a postage stamp, in crayon, chubby crayon. ;)

Portuguese. If you know anything about world history, you'll know why that's relevant.[1]
 1. Hint: Tea was invented in China, not the UK.
Portuguese people are actually Chinese in disguise?

Serious answer: Would I be right in saying the Portuguese were prominent traders with the east? If not, then video games lied to me. ;)

Besides nobody 'invented' tea, though they were the first to turn it into a beverage. My favourite tea actually originates from South Africa, Rooibos. People will brew tea how it best suits their taste, even if they're crazy enough to forget the milk! (The heathens)

The Chinese don't claim authority on how it should be brewed.


I do.
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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #14 on: May 02, 2012, 05:19:19 AM »
What kind of insane person drinks tea without milk???  &)

I tried it, once. I was on vacation in London and decided to try some tea, since everything else was foreign (save for their [your?] puny excuse for a breakfast). It was awful.

The difference is that I see this 'debate' as a bit of fun whereas you seem to take it very seriously. I think you should perhaps calm down, a cup of tea (with milk) might help  ;)

I'm just trying to learn something. If you're right, why hide it? If you're wrong, why not simply admit it?

Serious answer: Would I be right in saying the Portuguese were prominent traders with the east? If not, then video games lied to me. ;)

Pretty much. We went to China, Japan, India, Africa and a bunch of other places.

Besides nobody 'invented' tea, though they were the first to turn it into a beverage.

Isn't that what tea is? :S
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Offline Seppuku

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #15 on: May 02, 2012, 05:23:58 AM »
Quote
Isn't that what tea is?

Tea is also a plant. ;) And we all know God invented that.  &) Plus different groups of people have their own 'recipes' so to speak. The Indians gave us Curry, but the Chicken Tikka Masala is pure British baby! We won't let Indians tell us how to serve our Curry, or the Chinese (who also have recipes for Curry) :P.
« Last Edit: May 02, 2012, 05:26:16 AM by Seppuku »
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Offline hickdive

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #16 on: May 02, 2012, 05:31:48 AM »
I'm just trying to learn something. If you're right, why hide it? If you're wrong, why not simply admit it?

I'm pretty certain I never claimed that the Chinese put milk in their tea, perhaps you could point out to me where I did?

What I did was define 'real tea' as I see it. A matter of taste, purely subjective, just as you dislike milk in yours, I enjoy milk in mine. Some people even put sugar in theirs!

Seriously, you are taking this to a level I never intended and which I'd hoped to avoid, even popping in a couple of emoticons to make that clear (but obviously I failed).

You seem to be enormously angry over something that is of absolutely no consequence, I'm sorry you feel that way but your reaction is, in my view, disproportionate to the subject matter.

However, to hopefully calm you;

Yes, I did claim the Chinese put milk in their tea and no I have no evidence for that and therefore I am wrong and you are right.

There, feel better now?
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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #17 on: May 02, 2012, 05:39:57 AM »
What I did was define 'real tea' as I see it.

Acknowledged.
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Offline Pounamu

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #18 on: May 02, 2012, 06:07:17 AM »
Still waiting for when the Chinese started using milk in tea... Unless, of course, you wish to define "real tea" to suit your claim.

Chinese - not sure. But Indians do put milk in their tea ;)


EDIT: And it tastes good by the way. Try it, Lu! :)
« Last Edit: May 02, 2012, 06:11:45 AM by Cadillac »
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Offline Pounamu

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #19 on: May 02, 2012, 06:21:00 AM »
Rockets were invented in China too, does that mean the USA can't claim to know anything about rockets?

I don't see Portugal anywhere on this list either;

http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/foo_tea_con-food-tea-consumption

Here is the full list of countries by tea consumption per capita:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_tea_consumption_per_capita
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Offline magicmiles

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #20 on: May 02, 2012, 06:34:06 AM »
The tea debate has been splendid
Do we take it with milk or without?
The Portugese sailed to China
of that there isn't a doubt

But does that make Luci an expert?
I rather think that it does not
But neither should Hickdive or Seppu
be able to tell us what's what

The answer to me is quite plain
as I sit here now munching my toffee
Give up on that damn awful beverage
and just try and learn to like coffee
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Offline RNS

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #21 on: May 02, 2012, 07:07:58 AM »
Good tea usually doesn't come in tea bags. Loose leaf tends to brew and taste better- it usually means the actual tea is of better quality as well.

I put 1 small tea spoon of leaf in hot water (that has just been boiled) and allow it to steep for some time.

Then, add a slice of lemon, after it has cooled down a bit so not to denature all the goodness from the lemon. No sugar. Enjoy.

Replace to lemon with milk if you plan on dipping your biscuits. I think viennese biscuits dipped in milk tea are some of the tastiest things on earth.
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Offline velkyn

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #22 on: May 02, 2012, 09:06:04 AM »
I like tea with milk and without.  Depends on the type of tea.  With oolong, no milk; with regular black tea, milk.

 I did once make the tragic mistake of putting milk in Red Zinger (I was about 12 so give me a break).   My, how the milk did curdle  ;D

very much like chai.  An Indian restaurant here does the long pours which I (with my utter lack of coordination) find fascinating). 

this tea scares me a bit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butter_tea   but I would think it would taste basically like a savory soup. 
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Offline Seppuku

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #23 on: May 02, 2012, 09:11:58 AM »
Chai Tea is awesome. And it goes well with milk IMO. There was a coffee shop where I went to Uni that did a really nice Chai Latte.


I've never tried butter tea, but after Bill Bailey's brilliant description of Bhutan, I would like to visit the place so maybe I will one day get to try their butter tea. Can't say I've ever had Yak butter either...wonder if it's nice on crumpets?  &)
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Offline screwtape

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #24 on: May 02, 2012, 10:00:39 AM »
and tell me tea drinkers, how is it "supposed" to be made. 

However you like it is how it is supposed to be made. 

I actually like lipton.  But I also like the snobby, loose leaf teas from boutiques.  My day to day tea is Twinnings Irish Breakfast tea.  I like celestial seasonings tension tamer and sleepy time.  they used to make the best chai, but I cannot find it anymore.  I've not tasted any other bag chai that was any good. 

I make my own chai on weekends.  I cannot tell you the recipe.  It is a closely guarded secret.  but I use milk in it usually.

I loath oolong and green tea.

The only tea house I've been to was in boulder, colorado.  It was a traditional Afghan tea house - Dushanbe. It was really cool and the tea was very good.
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Offline Quesi

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #25 on: May 02, 2012, 10:21:42 AM »
Lucifer-

You know, a while back you encouraged me to tell you that you were "being a dick" when I thought you were "being a dick." 

I'm not sure I'm going to go quite that far.  But seriously.  You smited the guy for a silly poem?  He takes pride in his silly poems. 

Art is subjective.  Your areas of expertise include identifying and naming flaws in logic and weak argumentation.  You have an amazingly well-tuned bullshit detector.  And I suspect that you know a lot more about the history and politics of tea than most of us.  But art?  Almost anyone can find some bullshit in just about any piece of art if they look hard enough.  May I respectfully, and humbly suggest that you leave art criticism to those who have a higher level of tolerance for all things subjective? 

Smite MM when he starts presenting arguments for the eternal damnation of those who don't buy into his concept of a deity.  Not for his silly poems. 

Submetida humildemente

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #26 on: May 02, 2012, 11:25:30 AM »
You smited the guy for a silly poem?

Yes, I did. Because
Art is subjective.

If I don't like his art, and you agree that art is subjective, why can't I smite him if I don't like it?
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Offline screwtape

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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #27 on: May 02, 2012, 11:51:02 AM »
okay.  Quesi was being nice about it, but that didn't work.  So it's up to mean, old Screwtape.

Lucifer, your participation in this thread had been dickish from start to finish.  Please quit being a dick.  That includes trying to justify your dickish behavior. 

This thread is about tea, goddammit.  So can we please get back to tea?

It is crappy, cold, rainy weather here today.  I wish I'd stayed home and had tea.
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Re: tea and tea shops
« Reply #28 on: May 02, 2012, 12:01:01 PM »
screwtape, you make a good point regarding the topic of discussion. As such, I will drop the issue.

That said, it's also cold and raining here. Thankfully, I'm already home. Tea time! =D
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