Friday, July 31, 2009

George Orwell and his 11 rules for making the perfect cup of tea

Towards the later part of his life, the author of 1984 wrote an essay titled “A Nice Cup of Tea”, at a time when tea in fact was a scarce item because of WWII

Ceylon Tea was in fact the preferred choice and formed the grater part of what was available in GB.

His 11 rules for making the perfect cup of tea, “golden rules” for “golden tips.” were:

1. Use Indian or Ceylonese tea
2. Brew tea in a china (ceramic) or earthenware pot
3. Warm the pot before adding the loose-leaf tea
4. Use strong tea
5. Place loose-leaf tea directly into the pot without a strainer, muslin bag, or other device to ‘imprison the tea.’ Take the teapot to the kettle to pour water that should be boiling
6. Stir or shake the pot
7. Drink the tea out of a cylindrical cup
8. Decant any cream off of the fresh milk before using
9. Pour tea into the cup, then pour in the milk
10. Drink tea without sugar

Sadly, today, most of the tea drunk in Great Britain originates from East Africa and Pure Ceylon Tea now accounts for about 5% of what is consumed.

Post Independence and with land reform,in 1971-1972, the government nationalized the tea estates owned by the British companies and later in 1975 nationalized the Rupee and sterling companies too.

This saw many of the Expat Planters returning to England or Scotland, migrating to Australia or moving to East Africa to help in the development of tea plantations there. From that time onward the demand for Ceylon Tea was gradually replaced by EA teas

How times change

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