Tea is a splendid idea any time of day – morning, noon or night, before, with or after a meal. So why is it that we have something called a “Breakfast Tea” and what does it have to do with Breakfast?
The blend itself, which is comprised of Assam, Ceylon and Kenyan tea, and is a robust, full-bodied brew. This highly caffeinated blend is a great way to start off the morning. The traditional English breakfast is a hearty meal to itself, consisting of bacon, sausage, eggs, beans, potatoes, porridge, and breads. Seeing as people used to only eat 2 meals a day, breakfast was meant to get you through a good portion of the day. A strong black tea matches well with a meal so hearty and it also aids digestion.
The idea of tea designated by time of day was just getting popular in the late 1800s, around the time that this blend was created. If you were well-to-do or part of the aristocracy, you would stop around 3 or 4 o’clock for a mid-day fare of finger-foods and small sandwiches and pastries which became known as having “Afternoon Tea.”
So when this blend was created by a Scottish Tea Master by the name of Drysdale, he gave it the name “Breakfast Tea” to delineate this blend as a morning eye-opener – a tea meant to start the day. Thanks to catchy marketing, hundreds of years later, the name has stuck and we have Breakfast Teas.
Then of course we have both English and Irish Breakfast teas. The naming of which was no doubt more marketing to reflect regional pride. There are differences, but assuredly the Irish people don’t go and order or buy “Irish Breakfast Tea.” However, there are differences between the two.
While both are hearty black tea blends made of Assam and Ceylon teas, the Irish Breakfast tea tends to a higher Assam quotient in the blend. This tends to make their tea maltier and more astringent versus the smoother, brisk qualities of the English version.
So start your morning the right way and drink your breakfast (tea, that is…).
Madam Potts’ blog, Mad Potts of Tea!
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