Saturday, April 2, 2011


painting of mad hatter's tea party from Alice in Wonderland

As anyone who knows me can attest, I am indeed a tea drinker. And I don't just mean that I indulge now and again. I am a tea drinker. I have often said that I drink tea like most Americans drink coffee.
antique asian teapot burgandy

Now as an inveterate drinker of the amber nectar (too cloying?), I could say a thing or two about the particulars of its brewing - like so many many others, it seems. But I find myself put off by the certitude with which each testimony is proffered.

The actual ritual itself can vary widely with each drinker. But each person seems to hold his own ways inviolate and unquestionable. (like some "religious" folk, eh?)

wall of teapotsTea first, milk first, sugar, honey, loose, bags, flavored, plain, - so much controversy. A veritable tempest in a tea pot, one might say.

I, on the other hand, stand more for individual choice, (except, perhaps this) embracing a sort of brewing agnosticism. Or would that be a brewing multi-theism?

Anyway, how I brew my tea changes with the vagaries of whim, (and the amount of time I have).

When hosting a tea party with my granddaughters, I, of course, pull out all the stops: beautiful tea pots, exquisite porcelain tea cups, and all the trappings such auspicious occasions command.

I have tea "balls" and infusers of all descriptions, from the mundane and practical to the unique and playful. A whistling kettle, of course, holds court on my stove at all times. Also included in my brewing cache are a couple of french presses sporting beautiful works of art. And then there are the tea pots, themselves. Unique, singular, artful, they are as much a joy to behold as they are to use.

The heavy hitter in this arsenal however, is my electric tea maker. I put cold water in one place, delicious loose tea in another, push the button, and wait for it to perform its magic. Sacrilege, you say? Because of this magical contraption I can go about my responsibilities, assured of continuous access to my life's blood, delicious hot tea.

If you are interested,
below are some links to amusing
and informative articles on the topic.

 A Nice Cup of Tea (George Orwell),
Tea (Douglas Adams),
How To Make A Decent Cup Of Tea (Christopher Hitchens)

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