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When I was a younger feller I was not particularly aware of tea. But I knew enough to know that “tea” and black tea were one and the same. I’m sure there must have been a few people here in the United States – even in those unenlightened days – who drank other types of tea. But in this part of the world the recent fad for green tea and less popular types like oolong, puerh, white, and yellow has only come around in recent years.

China Tea Sampler (ETS image)

China Tea Sampler (ETS image)

Of course, in the greater scheme of things, green tea is hardly a flash in the pan. It’s likely that something like it has been around as long as there’s been tea. But I thought it might be interesting to try to look at some of its origins. In an old tea book that I wrote about for this site recently, a book that was published in 1868, the author noted that “Green Tea” began to be used in Great Britain around 1715.

Of course, given that green tea is closest to tea in its natural state, it stands to reason that it has been around longer than the other more processed types of tea like black, oolong, and puerh. In The True History of Tea, authors Victor Mair and Erling Hoh, write that loose leaf green tea had become the most popular type in China in the late Song dynasty, which ended in the latter years of the thirteenth century. Among the other types of tea that were popular at the time were powdered tea and wax tea. The latter was made by shaping tea leaves into a cake – as is often done with puerh – and then sealing it with camphor or some other type of aromatic oil.

Of course, when you talk about green tea you have to mention Japan, where they produce some of the best green teas and where black tea is something of a curiosity that’s only been produced in small amounts for the last century and a half. Tea is thought to have come to Japan from China during the Tang dynasty, sometime during the eighth century. But the sencha variety of green tea, which is one of the green teas that are so closely associated with Japan, actually came about during the early Ming dynasty in China, thanks to some changes in how green tea was processed.

In Europe, contrary to the aforementioned date of 1715, it’s likely that green tea was present from the very beginning, about a century earlier. In 1702, as Mair and Hoh relate, a cargo of tea shipped in from China consisted primarily of various types of green tea. But, as a harbinger of things to come, particularly in Britain, a portion of the cargo was given over to black tea.

See more of William I. Lengeman’s articles here.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Teas are much easier to get these days! (ETS image)

Teas are much easier to get these days! (ETS image)

Once upon a time, as tea began to make its way to Europe, it was a commodity that wasn’t consumed by anyone who was afflicted with shallow pockets. Much, if not most, of the tea shipped there in the early days came from China, which meant a voyage of several months. Add to this the fact that some countries levied considerable taxes on this new commodity and you can see why it wasn’t meant for bargain shoppers.

As the title of this article suggests, this is not an in-depth look at tea smuggling so I’ll just touch on the situation in England. Where one company held a monopoly on imports of tea – the East India Company. It was also a place where the tax on tea was well over one hundred percent by the time of The Commutation Act of 1784, which I wrote about here and which eased the tax burden considerably. While some sources suggested that at one point the amount of tea smuggled into the country was three times as much as the amount of legal tea brought in, the reduction in taxes served to put a considerable crimp in the smuggling trade.

Though tea smuggling was clearly against the law back in the day it was not something “common” people – the ones with the shallow pockets – were likely to get too worked up about, as it meant that they were more likely to have a source of affordable tea. And, while this might have caused some consternation among the East India Company, the fact was that many of their ship’s officers contributed to the problem – if indeed it even was one – by selling tea that they themselves smuggled in using the private cargo spaces they were entitled to.

As this more extensive overview (courtesy of the UK Tea Council) notes, tea smuggling operations tended to become larger and better organized as the years went on. And while the smugglers might have been doing a favor, of sorts, for people of more modest means, they weren’t necessarily the kind of people you’d want to invite to your next tea party. Among the better known and more unsavory of these were the rather notorious Hawkhurst Gang, who, to put it rather mildly, were not a very nice bunch.

See more of William I. Lengeman’s articles here.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

This will hardly be a thesis, but I thought it might be interesting to get a little bit of historical perspective on oolong, that type of tea that is generally less known than black and green but better known than relatively obscure teas such as white, yellow, and puerh. Needless to say it’s not mentioned quite as often in historical records as black or green tea, but it does come in for a mention now and then.

English Tea Store brand Oolong Teas (ETS image)

English Tea Store brand Oolong Teas (ETS image)

One of the earliest references I was able to locate was from 1798, in a book called Around the Tea-table, by Thomas De Witt Talmage. It’s a rather fanciful book of stories, more or less, as they might be told around a tea table. In the first paragraph the author mentions oolong tea, along with a variety that’s rather obscure these days, “Let the ring of the tea-bell be sharp and musical. Walk into the room fragrant with Oolong or Young Hyson.”

From just ten years later, I ran across a somewhat unlikely reference from none other than the Annual Report of the New York (State) Bureau of Labor Statistics. Which presents a table of wholesale prices of oolong and other types of tea “in the New York market” from the previous decade. At which time Formosa Oolong could be had for as little as 21 cents. That’s presumably for a pound, though it’s not made completely clear.

Even more unlikely, at least a bit, is a reference from the Minnesota Farmers’ Institute Annual, of 1835. If you find it hard to imagine Minnesotans of that day sipping oolong tea, consider that a company currently displaying at the state fair offered a range of goods including oolong tea. In The Gardeners’ Chronicle and Agricultural Gazette, from 1844, a number of references are made about oolong tea, describing it in a way that suggests that it’s something of a curiosity and also noting that it is “high-flavoured” and comes from China.

A few years later The Golden Rule and Odd-fellows Family Companion, which was apparently a periodical of the day, waxed rather lyrical about “Divine Oolong,” going on sing the praises of “this oolong, ripe, well-cured,” though it seems that it might all have been part and parcel of an advertisement for the Pekin Tea Company:

And our heart is warmed to kinship
With the Pekin Company:
Well art though named celestial,
Land of the oolong tea!

See more of William I. Lengeman’s articles here.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

It’s been a while since I’ve been a student, so I don’t know what the curricula is like these days. But there was a time when anyone who had passed from the hallowed halls of elementary school had a fairly thorough grounding in that famous incident in American history – the Boston Tea Party. You know the story, of course. Colonists dress as what we used to call Indians and storm ships in Boston Harbor, dumping tea into the drink as a protest against unfair taxation and whatnot.

Black teas too good to throw overboard! (ETS image)

Black teas too good to throw overboard! (ETS image)

Or so the story goes. Of course, the popular and commonly accepted versions of history are not always one and the same (George Washington and the cherry tree, anyone?) and apparently that’s the case with the Boston Tea Party. Here are a few of the alleged myths that might need some debunking.

Author Ray Raphael has written a book that claims to debunk various myths about the founding of the United States. He takes on some Boston Tea Party myths here. For starters, he asserts that not all colonists celebrated the event and many actually viewed the dumping of the tea as an unsavory act of vandalism that might hurt their cause. No thoughts on what was made of the wastefulness of 340 chests of tea being dumped into the harbor, but speaking as a modern-day tea drinker I always find that aspect a bit unsettling.

Another myth that most people probably aren’t aware of is that tea taxes had actually been reduced around this time. So the rebellion was not about high taxes but rather the fact that colonists didn’t have any say in taxes that were levied on them. As the author notes, land taxes as well as those on the likes of sugar, molasses, and wine were much more significant. Taxes on tea were comparatively modest, and even if they hadn’t been, there was a brisk smuggling trade for anyone who was out for a bargain.

Some time ago I wrote about the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum. Which is pretty much what the name suggests. But since this site is devoted to tea I wanted to reiterate, as I mentioned in that article, which types of tea were tossed in the harbor on that fateful day a few centuries ago, “the three tea ships contained 240 chests of Bohea, 15 of Congou, 10 of Souchong (all black teas), 60 of Singlo, and 15 of Hyson (both green teas).”

At the attraction’s very own web site they take on some Boston Tea Party myths as well. Look here for a video in which “noted Revolutionary War scholar” Professor Benjamin L. Carp attempts to straighten a few misconceptions.

See more of William I. Lengeman’s articles here.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

A great tea from India: Darjeeling (ETS Image)

A great tea from India: Darjeeling (ETS Image)

So which great people throughout history drank tea and which did not? This is hardly the place to do an in-depth review of the topic, but we can be pretty sure about the tea drinking habits – or lack thereof – of certain great historical figures based on where and when they lived. It’s likely that Julius Caesar, Charlemagne, and William the Conqueror never drank tea, simply because they lived in Europe long before tea is known to have been introduced there.

Then there are those historical types whom we might expect to be tea lovers but who weren’t. Take Gandhi, for instance, who lived in India, a country that by the time he lived was already a powerhouse of tea production. Though Gandhi was once a tea drinker, he came to believe that tea was an intoxicant and that the tannins it contained were bad for health. Thus he gave it up. Take a look at his tea-free ginger lemon alternative at his grandson’s web site.

Another great head of state, Winston Churchill, apparently was not all that enamored of tea either, according to the National Churchill Museum, who claim that he avoided it. He tended to forego that time-honored ritual of afternoon tea and apparently preferred to drink something with a little more of a kick than tea.

Like the English, the Russians were hardly slouches when it came to tea drinking and even gave the world a tea prep gadget known as the samovar. So perhaps it’s not surprising that Russian dictator Vladimir Lenin was a tea drinker. As a contemporary biography recalls, black bread, tea, and porridge was a common meal for Lenin and in the those early violent days of the revolution he often drank his tea without sugar as a measure of solidarity with the rest of the population.

Then there are our presidents. As this page on presidential eating habits recounts, tea and coffee were served at breakfast in the household of our first president, while Jefferson apparently bought some of a tea he sampled in Amsterdam to take back home. Mary Lincoln is known to have served tea and cakes to her guests while Rutherford B. Hayes mixed it up, with a cup of coffee at breakfast and one of tea at lunch. As for Honest Abe Lincoln, one legend recounts that when he was a storekeeper in his early days, he walked a great distance just to make a customer’s tea order right.

See more of William I. Lengeman’s articles here.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

A cuppa Earl Grey White tea in a Delft blue mug. The Dutch still influence our tea time! (Photo by A.C. Cargill, all rights reserved)

A cuppa Earl Grey White tea in a Delft blue mug. The Dutch still influence our tea time! (Photo by A.C. Cargill, all rights reserved)

We’ve all heard of the Boston Tea Party, but tea came to the Western hemisphere long before that. Time to follow that trail and see just when tea was brought here and by whom.

Once upon a time (some say as long as 5,000 years ago), a studier of plants in China was boiling some water when some leaves from a nearby bush/tree (it varies, depending on the source of the tale) fell into his open pot (sort of like the “billy” those swagmen use in Australia). He let the water continue boiling and then decided to chance it and drink the liquid. Voilà! A beverage was born… or so the legend of Shen Nong goes. Whatever the real beginnings of this heavenly infusion, it took until the early 1600s for tea to reach Europe.

In 1492, a mere 4500 +/- years later, Europeans found that there was another continent between them and China when Columbus decided to sail straight West instead of the route around Africa that took so long. He was trying to find a shorter trade route. Many folks still thought the Earth was flat and that they would surely sail off the edge. His adventure was considered a big risk and rather foolish. However, his ships bumped into some islands off our Eastern Coast. More Europeans followed and established colonies, still not knowing about the wonders of tea.

A souvenir from the Amsterdam airport! (Photo by A.C. Cargill, all rights reserved)

A souvenir from the Amsterdam airport! (Photo by A.C. Cargill, all rights reserved)

Fast forward to 1560 A.D. when a humble Portuguese missionary named Jasper de Cruz encountered tea in person and wrote about it, the first European to do so. He brought tea to the attention of his countrymen in Portugal, and soon tea was shipping regularly to Lisbon.

Around 1610 the Dutch from the Netherlands, which at the time was the world’s most successful seafaring nation, got into the act, using their ships to bring tea not only to their own country but also France and the Baltic countries. The tea was rather expensive, though, by the standards of that time (about $100 per pound) and was thus much more the beverage of the wealthy. [One source said that the first tea arrived in Amsterdam in Holland in 1606 and was “the first known cargo of tea to be registered at a western port.”]

The year 1647 is the one set by some historians for Dutchman Peter Stuyvesant bringing tea to the Western hemisphere for the first time. He had travelled to New Amsterdam (the main Dutch settlement that is now New York City) to be its governor and brought that precious tea with him. True tea dedication when every item of cargo was given careful consideration. However, tea was still quite a pricey commodity at this time due to the expense of bringing it in those ships from the tea merchants in China to market in Europe.

In 1664, the British took over the settlement and renamed it New York. They found that despite the high price, tea drinking had caught on and the settlement consumed more tea than all the rest of England combined.

Around 1675 A.D., the price of tea in Europe was dropping as the beverage grew in popularity and became more available, especially in food shops in the Netherlands and France. Tea had become a way of life, with people in those two countries outpacing other Europeans in tea consumption.

In 1682 William Penn founded Philadelphia and he along with his fellow sober Quakers started a new market for “the cups that cheer but not inebriate.”

In the 1730s the price in New York and elsewhere in the Western hemisphere was brought down by the introduction of sleek, fast clipper ships that could get that tea across the oceans more quickly. But taxation on the tea, which was now under the monopolized control of the East India Company of England, was becoming a major offset to that lower transportation cost. In the mid 1700s, the Dutch aided revolutionaries in America, smuggling a steady supply of tea past the English.

Now we come to 1773 where the East India Company, with large stockpiles of unsold tea, got the British government to pass the Tea Act of 1773 so that the tea could be sold to the colonists without the tax, effectively undercutting both local tea merchants and smugglers. Neither group was happy about this, obviously, since they couldn’t similarly use government to their benefit. A boycott was declared, but a few port officials who were either very pro-British or really ardent tea lovers let some ships land and unload their tea cargo. On December 16th that tea got a dunking in the harbor waters and sparked a call for independence.

Fast forward this time to today, tea is plentiful and relatively cheap. The varieties in terms of flavorings, types, and styles are even wider. And to think that it all started with the Dutch!

See also: Tea Traditions — The Netherlands

See more of A.C. Cargill’s articles here.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Americans have probably consumed more black tea than any other kind over the course of the past few decades. But one of the more interesting facts I’ve run across in the years I’ve been writing about tea is that in earlier times we probably downed as much green tea as the black kind or perhaps even more.

Which is an interesting tidbit about green tea and history and I thought I’d set out to see what other ones I could find. A certain vast online archive might not contain every book every written, but it’s got a bunch and I thought it might a good place to dig up a few interesting facts on green tea throughout history.

One of the earliest references to green tea in said archive appears in 1706, in volume eight of The History of the Works of the Learned, Or, An Impartial Account of Books Lately Printed in All Parts of Europe also seen here. Many of these early references discuss green tea’s health benefits – or lack thereof, depending on who’s discussing. This one claims that it is a good diuretic and “Stomachtick” and also credits it with getting the blood going.

A few years later, in a work titled The British Apollo, or, Curious Amusements for the Ingenious, “Green-Tea” is said to help the suppression of urine. Whether that’s a good thing or not is hard to say. In a 1712 medical tome, the claim is put forth that green tea is a remedy for something or other, though it wasn’t quite clear to yours truly what ailment it was supposed to help. Here’s yet another such book, from 1724, which claims that green tea, with marshmallow root and licorice, serves to open up the lungs and acts as a diuretic.

Turning from the medical advice for a moment, we find John Nutt’s 1712 Asia is One Volume, with Thirty One Maps, Sanson’s Tables, &c. as May be Seen in the Catalogue Thereof Annex’d to the Preface, which takes a fairly in-depth look at Chinese tea. Nutt includes a brief description of green tea and provides a few strategies (including chewing it) for determining the quality. A similar description appeared a year earlier, in An Account of the Trade in India, by Charles Lockyer, along with two other mentions of green tea. Of course India wasn’t involved in the tea trade at the time but as nearly as I can tell Lockyer’s notion of what constitutes India is a little broader that what we know today.

See more of William I. Lengeman’s articles here.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Jonas Hanway's complete book where the essay on tea appears

Jonas Hanway's complete book where the essay on tea appears

It’s probably not surprising that so many English commentators of yesteryear felt compelled to pick up a pen and share their thoughts about tea. After all, tea was a relative newcomer to their island nation, only turning up in the middle portion of the seventeenth century and not really hitting it big for at least another half century after that.

Opinions among these commentators tended to be rather mixed, if the truth be told. While some of them did everything short of running through the streets (tea) drunkenly singing the praises of tea, there were probably just as many who felt that it was a vile substance that, if left unchecked, would contribute to the breakdown of law and order and the end of humanity as we know it.

We could safely put Jonas Hanway (1712 – 1786) in this latter category, at least based on the thoughts he expressed in his 1757 An Essay on Tea. The piece is actually part of a larger work, a two-volume book that he published in that same year, called A Journal of Eight Days Journey from Portsmouth to Kingston Upon Thames.

Hanway, if we’re to believe Wikipedia, was an “English traveller and philanthropist” and was apparently the “first Londoner, it is said, to carry an umbrella.” The unwieldy title of his diatribe on tea, excerpted from the even more unwieldy full title of the book, gives a pretty good indication of his not so complimentary opinions about tea, An Essay On Tea, Considered As Pernicious To Health, Obstructing Industry, And Impoverishing The Nation: With An Account Of Its Growth And Great Consumption In These Kingdoms.

The author devotes no small amount of his work to detailing the assorted and sundry evils that tea had already wrought in England. Among the various maladies he blames on its consumption are distempers, scurvy and weak nerves, just to name a few.

Today, tea is more popular than ever!

Today, tea is more popular than ever!

Though Hanway’s dry writing style doesn’t exactly make this a book that you’ll want to take to the beach, at least one of his contemporaries read enough of it to get his back up and write a lively rebuttal. That would be the infamous Samuel Johnson, who was proud to be a self-proclaimed “hardened and shameless tea-drinker.” More on his throwdown with Hanway in this article, which includes a link to the review he wrote of Hanway’s book.

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

I come across many tea books as I peruse the shelves at book stores and libraries, where I spend a great deal of my free time. Many of them are redundant, but this book is not one of them. The Story of Tea by Mary Lou and Robert J. Heiss is one of the most informative and comprehensive tea texts that I have ever come across. The authors are owners of a tea shop and have devoted their life to the pursuit of knowledge of all things tea.

The Story of Tea

The history section goes far beyond the usual leaves falling into the emperor’s cup story, tracing the history of tea not only in China but also in Tibet and into the West. But it was the manufacturing section that really sold me on this book. The authors go into great detail explaining each and every step of the process to make all of the varieties of the world’s tea, as well as the cultivation of the tea bush. Don’t believe me? Eighty pages on this topic, all of them fabulously interesting.

The book also discusses the different tea growing regions in far more detail than the encyclopedic entries in many tea books. Later on there is an encyclopedia of tea, nearly a book unto itself. And if you thought you knew everything there was to know about brewing the perfect cuppa, there are twenty pages of information on that particular subject. I even found some new information on those pages, but I’ll leave those to you to discover. There are also interesting sections on tea cultures around the world.

At the end of the book, there is one section about the health benefits of tea and another about cooking with tea. With the extensive bibliography in the back, I believe that the section on health and caffeine is one of the most accurate that I have seen. There are many misconceptions about tea and caffeine, and the authors make sure to address all of the factors that go into the caffeine content of your cup of tea. The section on tea ethics should be read by all tea drinkers, and some of the recipes are quite original.

Visit Stephanie Hanson’s blog, The Tea Scoop, for more great articles!

Tea. Lovely tea. As a long time fan of camellia sinensis, I’ve more tea than any sane person should have, stashed away in a large cabinet at home – everything from delicate white teas and sticky sweet matcha to smooth-as-silk darjeelings and it-tastes-like-dirt lapsang suchan. Every morning I have a cup to start my day.

Tea in Switzerland

Tea in Switzerland

But what about when I’m on vacation? How does one have that “tea experience” on the road? And where can I get my fix, uh, cuppa? It turns out that tea while traveling can be part of the vacation experience itself with very little effort.

Taking your favorite tea with you is an obvious first step. A tin, small toiletries bag or a simple zip-lock baggie filled with bagged teas (and don’t forget sweeteners if that’s a must for your enjoyment of the brew) should be in every tea lover’s carry-on luggage. (It’s in my carry-on. And I’m not weird. Mostly.) While baggies of tea won’t have to be brought out at security checkpoints, do be aware that if you – like a certain someone – stuff your carry-on full of tins of various loose leaf teas and several of those really nifty Chinese teas tied up in dried husks that you found in that cool tea shop, you will likely get pulled over and have your luggage rifled through.

Finding places to drink tea while traveling is the obvious next step. From traditional tea houses in Azerbaijan to a café by the Mediterranean in Greece, tea isn’t hard to find when traveling outside of the U.S. Take some time to learn a few words in the local language so you can read a menu and discern the green teas from the black teas. While in Switzerland I found I often had the choice of “tea for one” (one to three cups worth) or a largish pot fit for a small group of people. Take a look around and see what others are having with their tea and be brave. Be bold! Have some of that scrumptious looking cake. I found that a cup of tea and some of the local pastries went a long way towards perking up my traveling companion and I in the afternoon. Two of the most memorable places I’ve been to on recent vacations:

The Dushanbe Tea House, Boulder, Colorado. On 13th Street, within walking distance of great shopping, this teahouse was built in partnership with Boulder’s sister city, Dushanbe, Tajikistan.

Heini’s Tearoom, Lucerne, Switzerland. On Falkenplatz, at the corner of Old Town, the pastry choices here are overwhelming and the people-watching is fantastic.

Tea Room Abroad

Confiserie Tea Room in Basel, Switzerland

But it’s not just about drinking tea. It’s also about shopping for tea. In some places you can find specialty stores filled with a wide assortment to choose from. On the same trip to Switzerland I found that these shops were often a visually spectacular combination of tea and spices. Ordinary home decorating stores can wear out your credit card as well – European stores tend to have many more tea-related items to choose from than is commonly available in the U.S. Sexy tea paraphernalia is everywhere, from lovely strainers that sit in the tea cup and allow the tea leaves to swell and brew, to measuring spoons, electric tea kettles, teapots and teaspoons. Antique stores and local flea markets are also a treasure trove for tea lovers with piles and piles of silver teaspoons and old teacups available. I even found large garden pots in the shape of teacups, though they wouldn’t fit in my luggage. Unfortunately.

Even a trip to the museum can be a tea-experience. Learn all about the history of tea and coffee in Europe at the Bramah Museum in London. Find out why half a million pounds of perfectly good tea was dumped into Boston Harbor at the Boston Tea Party Ships and Museum in Boston, Massachusetts. Peek inside an “excavated” alpine teahouse in the Matterhorn Museum in Zermatt, Switzerland. And be sure to check out the China National Tea Museum and gardens in Hangzhou.

But if all that’s just too much time, expense and distance for you, consider an easier alternative: brew up a cup, turn on the Travel Channel and imagine you’re cruising the Rhine, the Yangtze or the Amazon river in your jammies, brew in hand!

Be sure to check out Fazia’s tea blog, All About Tea! It’s great!

© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this article’s author and/or the blog’s owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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© Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog, 2009-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Online Stores, Inc., and The English Tea Store Blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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