Tea Trivia – Did you know!

Cup of tea

There is so much information about tea out on the web. Whilst brushing up on a bit of knowledge, I became distracted on some of the fun, pub quiz, pop master type information. You never know when you will need to shout out loud that you know some of this trivia. Do you know the year Iced Tea was invented, or the origin of the little tea pot song?  Well, read on and you soon will.

Here are a few of my favourites nuggets of information on tea Hertfordshire and further afield:

Tea Bags 

These were invented over 100 years ago (1908) by an American Thomas Sullivan.  He would place loose leaf teas in a silk bag to give to potential customers as samples. Instead of the bags being opened and used directly in tea pots, the customers accidentally would simply put the bag in the pot or cup and add the hot water. Tea has moved on a lot since then, but we are happy say that Novus tea continues to use silk for its pyramid teas bags.


Is the correct names for reading tea leaves. Not a common word and one many would never have heard of. When a fortune teller next approaches you, you can impress them with this knowledge.

High Tea

As you may have guessed was introduced by Queen Victoria. High tea is generally after the evening meal. You take your tea at a physically high table

Earl Grey

Was in fact the British Diplomat to China during the 19th Century who apparently never set foot in the country.  Various tales and legends of heroic deeds, water hardness and gifts being presented for saving peasants lives are around, so I’m not entirely sure!! The scented oil Bergamot, initially it is thought was added to imitate some of the more expensive Chinese teas before they were imported.

Lemon and Milk

Lemon curdles milk so you should never have these both in the cup. Plus, I presume tastes awful.

The year 1877

The first Iced Tea recipe gets published in a house keeping magazine.

Formal Tea Service

Included a “slop” bowl.  Slop bowls were for discarding used water. Still today a warm pot, using freshly boiled water, clean equipment and crockery is recommended to make that perfect cuppa.

The song

“I’m a Little Teapot, Short and Stout” written in 1939 by Clarence Kelley and George Harry Sanders. They created this song with the knowledge that it would enable children to overcome a challenging tap dance routine. Funnily enough the rhythm gave the correct beats to move to.

It was only

In 1717 that women could drink tea in coffee houses in England. Cafes were all men only originally.  Only when Twining’s opened the Golden Lion were women welcomed. Twining’s has the oldest original commercial logo in the UK.

The average person

In the UK drinks 16 cups per week. 11 at home and 5 at work

As long as you maintain your leaf tea in ambient, air tight and dark spaces it can last for up to 2 years. Naturally it will deteriorate over time, but as a rule the larger and tighter leaf i.e.: Oolongs & Pearls, the longer they will last. Green and White teas tend to lose flavour quickest. This is due to the natural oils within them, and black tea due to the process are the longest. Tea bags around 6 – 12 months.

The sun is shining and I fancy a nice refreshing Egyptian Mint to get back to the day job.

Posted on June 19, 2017 in Novus Tea

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