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ENGLISH BREAKFAST
(English Favourites)



Country of Origin: Sri Lanka / India / Kenya

Region: Nuwara Eliya, Dimbula, Uva / Assam, Nilgiri / Kericho, Nandi

Grade: Flowery Pekoe

Altitude: 4000-8500 / 500 – 1500’ / 5600’ - 6400’ feet above sea level

Manufacture Type: Orthodox (Traditional leafy)

Cup Characteristics: A perfect breakfast tea with good body and full tea flavour notes. Coppery bright – especially enticing with milk

Infusion: Bright with coppery orange highlights

Ingredients: Luxury black tea

Pairing Suggestions: Traditional English style breakfast, cheddar and cream cheeses, cured meats


Information:

          Today the habit of tea drinking is inexorably linked to England despite the fact that the British were fairly late on the tea scene, in historical terms. Ironically the first mention of tea in English literature is a translation of a Dutchman’s travels to the East. Tea was first brought to England via Holland on Dutch ships. As tea grew to become an ‘in’ beverage, the British government became quite incensed that a nation as tiny as the Netherlands could control the shipment of tea to the UK. In 1651 the British government passed the Navigation Acts, which forbade the importation of any products on non-British ships. Traders and Dutchmen, being resourceful, continued the trade in the usual manner but for one little wrinkle - the tea was transshipped in Holland onto British ships!

          Early in British life tea was known as a health beverage and claimed all sorts of curative powers. In the 1650’s, Garway’s Coffee House proclaimed that: “Tea makes the body active and lusty. Tea is declared to be the most wholesome; preserving perfect health until extreme Old Age” Afternoon tea was the invention of Anna, wife of the seventh Duke of Bedford. At the time custom dictated only two planned meals per day: a hearty breakfast and a late evening dinner. Anna in an effort to ease the mid-day “sinking feeling”, began instructing her servants to prepare tea and cakes in the late afternoon. Thus began a fashionable habit, which still exists today.

          Britain is steeped in tea history. Think of: High Tea, the Brown Betty, American War of Independence, Opium Wars, The Boxer Rebellion, Clipper Ship races from Fuzhou, China to Portsmouth UK, the Earl of Grey, English Breakfast etc. etc.


Hot tea brewing method:

          Bring freshly drawn cold water to a rolling boil. Add desired quantity of loose-leaf tea to your teapot. Infuse with freshly boiled water, cover and let steep for 3-8 minutes in accordance to desired strength.


Iced tea-brewing method:

          (Make 1 liter/quart): Bring freshly drawn cold water to a rolling boil. Place 6 teaspoons of loose-leaf tea into a teapot or heat resistant pitcher. Infuse with 1 ¼ cups boiled water and let steep for 5 minutes. Next, fill a large pitcher ¼ full of freshly drawn cold water. Strain brewed tea into pitcher with the cold water. Fill the remainder of the pitcher with ice and top up with more cold water. Sweeten to taste, garnish and serve. (Note: Some premium quality teas may turn cloudy when poured over ice. This is a sign of quality leaf and nothing to worry about!)