They are five o’clock tea time. On the table, smoking a tea with milk served with some pasta. We are undoubtedly in United Kingdom where ‘Tea time’ is one of the most celebrated British traditions and part of everyday life. But also can enjoy of this drink in a leafy garden Japanese or drink it in cups of glass with reasons arabesques.
Today travel different places large consumers of tea: United Kingdom, Japan, China, Morocco and Turkey, where the tea form part essential of it culture and where share veneration for this drink ancient.
For Asians and some regions of Europe, take tea requires a protocol that makes it a true art. We enter the ceremonies in each country to learn about traditions, wisdom and history.
Tea time, or afternoon tea, is a British habit that usually happens at five in the afternoon, a ritual that confirms the English passion for tea.
Also, the time of the tea is accompanied of some type of cake as the of coffee and nuts or pastries glazed and them famous scones, ones rolls accompanied of jam of strawberries.
Good tea is usually served in porcelain cups. Most British teapot is the domed Brown, called Brown Betty. In the Victorian era, when tea was most popular, prepared in the Brown Betty tea was considered excellent. This was due to the design of the teapot, which allowed the tea leaves more space to react when the water was poured into the kettle, freeing up more flavor and less bitterness.
Japan is a country very ceremonious and that saves with care the traditions ancestral. The ceremony of the tea is a ritual long and with several stages that goes more beyond of a simple meeting to take the tea. Is held in the tea house, un special place for ceremonies, located in the gardens of households.
A complete and formal tea ceremony includes a meal (chakaiseki) and two kinds of tea (koicha and usucha), and lasts approximately four hours, during which host dedicated his entire being to create an atmosphere in which guests enjoy aesthetic, intellectual and physically, surrounded at the same time a great serenity.
Stages of the ceremony
The tea ceremony can develop in several different ways, according to the school to which the host belongs, but generally consists of the following phases:
- Kaiseki: a light meal
- Naka-dachi: intermediate pause
- Enjoys-iri: phase main, in her thick green tea is served
- Usucha, end of the ceremony, in this phase, a lighter tea is served.
Thick tea (called «koi-cha») is preparing in silence. Tea is served with the front of the Bowl facing the guest. The bowl is taken with the right hand, is placed in the Palm of your left hand and rises slightly by a tilt with the head as a sign of gratitude.
The drink is passed among the guests, and each one of them takes on a SIP. The fact of sharing a same Bowl is a symbolic act that serves to increase the feeling of union at the meeting.
The host then add more charcoal to fire, serves Japanese dry sweets and prepares another tea, but this time more light and more foam, called «usu-cha». During the final stage, the guests can chat informally.
Some time ago, aromas of tea, we had the opportunity of attending a tea ceremony which Yui Ishizuka chef prepared, exclusively for us. We invite you to remember it, here.
The origin of the ceremony of tea in China dates back to the 14th – 17TH during the Ming dynasty. Most of the Teas that are used in the Chinese ceremony grow in the mountains of Taiwan and particularly refined. Thus, oolong teas, for example, they are lightly fermented and Red teas can be moderate to strongly mature.
Its preparation is as follows: first of all should warm the teapot. For this is pour a small quantity of water hot that is Strip below. Then is deposited in it the leaves of you. The amount is variable, there is an extended standard that sets a teaspoon per person more other to own teapot. Then we look for are you infusion well.
Pour the tea into small cups that fill half, since the Chinese believe that the rest of the Cup is completed with friendship and affection. Who serves every Cup passes to guests and invited that first smell the tea before anything. The courtesy is shown drinking tea in three drinks.
Symbol of hospitality, tea occupies a very important place in Moroccan culture. Not in vain, is one of the largest importers of tea in the world.
An metal teapot and cups of glass decorated with different motifs of colours is used for the ritual of tea. The sugar bowl and tray should be also metal, as the tea, to conserve heat. Once deposited in the tea leaves of tea, mint and sugar, tea is poured into the glass, from a considerable height and then turns to empty the contents of the vessel in the teapot.
This operation is repeated several times, until tea begins to form a foam in the vase. This is when you should taste. Served in 3 rounds and often accompanies Moroccan pastry in honey, with dates, pistachios or almonds.
Turkey has become a few years in a major consumer and producer of tea. The variety of tea that is produced and consumed is black, preferably at morning teaat breakfast.
Turkish tea prepared in a kind of stacked kettles (caydanlık), specially designed for the preparation of this tea.
Water is brought to a boil in bottom crock and any part of the water is used to fill the top kettle containing several teaspoons of tea. Occurs in this way a very strong tasting tea.
When it is served, the remaining water is used for diluting each cup tea if desired by the consumer, in this way can choose among strong tea ‘koyu’ (dark), or light ‘açık’.
Tea drinking in small cups and likes to serve very hot, usually pouring some sugar beet.