Recently a friend extended an invitation to me to join her for teatime. At first, I was apprehensive of accepting the invitation since I was ignorant about tea etiquette. You see, drinking tea is not complicated; the difficult part it is how one conducts themselves. I began searching the Internet for information on the subject. One article entitled, “Good Tea Etiquette,” struck my fancy for its information and conversational writing style.
The article provided information pertaining to holding a teacup, stirring tea, and tea additives. For example, I found out there are two different ways to hold a teacup. A point of reference from this article was that raising the pinky finger has a purpose. I always thought it was to make a statement of sorts. The purpose of raising of one’s pinky finger is to maintain balance and prevent spills.
Another interesting point of reference from this article is there is a proper flavor enhancer for tea. Surprisingly it is milk. Milk is preferred for tea, because cream is too heavy and camouflages the flavor. This is definitely good to know since I typically add cream and sugar to my coffee.
I can tell all of you this article helped prevent me from appearing foolish. My experience at teatime was both pleasant and enjoyable. If you are one of those people who enjoy teatime, but have minimal knowledge of the subject, I would suggest reading the article, entitled, “Good Tea Etiquette.” The next time someone extends an invitation to you to join him or her for teatime you can say, “That’s my cup of tea.” Yes, a bit of tea humor for you. Enjoy!
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A classic OLS/ETS blog entry originally published 12.2.2009
8 thoughts on “It’s Tea Time!”
I have questions. When requesting tea in a restaurant and you are given a small pot of hot water, a cup and a tea bag, does the bag go into the pot for brewing or in the cup to which the hot water is poured? What does one do with the bag (if brewed in the cup)? Thank you.
I have stopped ordering tea in restaurants. However, back in the day when I did, I steeped in the pot of hot water, pulling the bag out when the tea looked strong enough. Many restaurants provide a small plate or saucer for the little pot, and the used bag would sit on that plate/saucer. Hope this helps! 🙂
Thank you so much for your reply. I frequent a local restaurant that serves their tea in this way and I always feel awkward when the time comes.
My Grandmother used to call the white foam on top of the tea in the teacup, “money” Does anyone know where that came from?
im hosting a church rainbow tea and need all the help i canget.
Growing up with my Scottish Grandmother tea was daily a staple. She used to call the white foam that forms on top of the tea in my cup, “money” does anyone know the origin of that?
I recently purchased a DVD set by an American lady who states she will show you the correct method of taking tea and tea etiquette, I am Australian by birth and in my 40’s. I have lived in the United States for only 3 years and I found her DVDs full of incorrect information and in several ways insulted the tradition and history of Tea. Please internet users do not fall for the incorrect information given by these DVDs purchased from tea graces . com.
One point missed in the article is that the saucer follows the tea cup. For example, when you bring the tea cup to your lips, the saucer should be held horizontally to the ground under the tea cup. If you are moving about a room, the saucer and tea cup should be together. Do not leave the saucer on the table and move the tea cup.