Hi everyone, Winnie Griggs here.
In my books, when company comes to visit, they are more likely going to be offered a cup of tea rather than a cup of coffee. I suppose this is because I’m a tea lover myself and am not much on coffee (which makes me pretty much an outlier among my south Louisiana family ? )
I enjoy experimenting with tea flavors – green, black rooibos, herbal, chais. Some of my favorites are Hartney’s Hot Spicy Cinnamon and Bigelow’s Vanilla Chai. I also have a small collection of tea cups that I’ve collected – I’ve sprinkled images of some of them throughout this post.
Now for some trivia and fun facts related to tea:
- Not only is tea delicious but it is actually good for you. One of the things contained in tea are polyphenols which are antioxidants that repair cells. Because of this, consuming tea might help our bodies fend off cardiovascular diseases, cancers, osteoporosis, diabetes mellitus and other maladies.
- It is estimated that there a 1,500 different types of tea.
- On a per capita basis, Ireland is the largest nation of tea drinkers. Great Britain comes in second
- Approximately 85% of tea consumed in the United States is in the form of iced tea.
- The United States imports over 519 million pounds of tea annually.
- Tea is second only to water as the most widely consumed beverage worldwide.
- The annual worldwide production of tea comes in at over 3 million tons.
- Tieguanyin, an oolong tea, is the most expensive tea in the world at a cost of about $1,500 a pound.
- The United States invented both the tea bag and iced tea. Not everyone thinks the tea bag is a good thing as connoisseurs consider tea brewed from loose leaves to be richer in flavor.
- A cup of brewed tea on average contains less than half the caffeine of the same amount of coffee.
- The Twining family opened their teashop, the Golden Lyon, in 1717. That shop is still open today.
- If a scene calls for an actor to drink whisky, they usually substitute watered-down tea, which has the same look as whisky.
- The action of tea leaves uncurling as hot water is poured over them is called “the agony of the leaves”.
- Loose tea stays good for about two years if you keep it away from moisture and light. Tea bags, however, are only good for about six months before they begin losing their flavor.
- Black, oolong, green, and white tea all come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis. The difference comes in how the leaves are treated after they are harvested.
For black tea, the leaves are left to ferment until they turn black, then dried and packaged.
Oolong tea follows a similar process to black tea, but each individual stage in the process is not as long.
Green tea isn’t put through a fermentation process, rather it is either steamed or pan fried.
White tea is the least processed of the four. It is made from younger leaves that are usually only left to sun dry briefly before being prepared for packaging.
- Herbal “teas” are technically not teas at all, but rather, something called a tisane.
- Guinness World Records associated with tea (as of 2016)
Largest Tea Bag – 551 pounds, 9.8 feet wide by 13 feet high.
Largest Tea Cup – 10 feet tall by 8 feet wide
Most Cups of Tea Made in One Hour – 1848 (made by a team of 12 individuals)
And finally, my favorite tea quote:
“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me.” C.S.Lewis
So, are you a tea drinker? Do you have a favorite flavor? And did any of the above bits of trivia surprise you?