Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Polly, put the kettle on

As a tea drinker, I can count on one hand how many times I’ve drunk coffee. This admission has left many a person stunned, confused and disgusted at the very thought that I don’t drink coffee - a staple in a city known for its coffee culture.

I was brought up a tea drinker, and although English and Irish Breakfasts are my staples, lately I have been dabbling in a large number of varieties which seem to never end – chai, Lady Grey, Darjeeling, Orange Pekoe, Russian Caravan, Turkish Apple, Mint, Jaffa and even Cookies n’ Crème. Yes, you heard right – Cookies n’ Crème. Admittedly, the last one was through curiosity, but the list really does go on and on. There are so many varieties to choose from.

One close friend of mine and I are obsessed tea drinkers to the point where we have accumulated so many varieties between us, that we’ll probably go bankrupt from purchasing new varieties. And living with the parentals hasn’t helped – I’ve been banned from buying any more tea. The ban hasn’t really worked – I bought another tea from Melbourne tea chain T2, the other day - Geisha Getaway - a tasty refreshing blend perfect for summer hot or iced.

On my recent trip to Italy, my cousins were shocked when I told them that I didn’t drink tea. My response was “I’m not a real Italian, I don’t drink coffee”. Which set off a chain reaction and a mission-by-stealth by my cousins to transform me into a coffee drinker. I was given an affogato one afternoon to consume. I wasn’t convinced. Their mission failed. But every time someone asked if I wanted un caffe, my response triggered the same appalled response.

Being amongst coffee drinkers, it’s become pretty evident that no-one knows how to brew a good cuppa. And although many may think its just a matter of jiggling the tea bag in the cup for 30 seconds, like coffee drinkers, tea drinkers have an appreciation of well made tea. The Japanese even have it down to a fine art.

Tea is on the comeback trail and is the drink du jour in this coffee soaked city. So, put the kettle on, I’ll be around in five…

High Tea in Paris - Mary Cassat's Cup of Tea 1880

1 comment:

Marie Young said...

I feel that i can comment on this subject as an authority from both camps, for i was once a devout coffee drinker for years before i made the switch about 4 years ago to tea.

It's like this, tea is warm, soothing and safe (like a husband). However, even i cannot resist the lure of coffee (ONLY freshly ground) sometimes to give me a high charged, energy boost from time to time.

(Yes it's true, i have the occassional secret trist with a latte!)