Busy lives need fuel to get the day started out right. For tea devotees, no breakfast is complete without a brisk cuppa. “Gulper” teas are best, usually having a bigger caffeine punch and stronger flavor that goes well with many typical breakfast foods like waffles and eggs and bacon.
Awhile back I divided teas into two general categories: sippers and gulpers. Now, that’s not official, of course. If you take a course on tea, they will probably not mention this distinction. I, however, consider it fairly important. You need to know which teas are deserving of your extra time and attention, deserving of lingering sip by sip on your tongue so you can absorb and be aware of every bit of flavor and aroma. You also need to know of the teas that are robust and impact the interior of your mouth full tilt.
The word “breakfast” comes from “break the fast,” where “fast” refers to the time between your last meal of the previous day until your first meal of the current day. The foods that constitute this meal vary greatly across countries, cultures, and time. My father, raised on a farm during the Great Depression, had a pretty robust breakfast with fried eggs and ham, melon slices, toast with slatherings of butter and preserves, fried tomatoes, and sometimes a big bowl of oatmeal. Then, it was back out to the fields, the barn, the chicken coop, etc. During my years dating a man from India and even for many years afterwards, I would often reheat leftover curry for my breakfast with white rice or chapatti. In Germany, various breads from rye to pumpernickel to whole grain wheat and spreads like braunschweiger (liver wurst) and Nutella plus fresh fruits were typical day starters.
Some good “gulper” teas to start your day:
- Highlander Blend – 25 teabags pouch — Highlanders are hardy Scotsmen who live in the highlands of Scotland. The highlands are the mountainous areas. No, they are not immortals wielding swords and battling other immortals for “the quickening.” They do, however, know a tasty cuppa tea when they gulp it.
- Yorkshire Harrogate — This is the one that makes the scone mix jump out of the cupboard and beg to be baked so they can be enjoyed alongside this tea. Great for breakfast. Make extra ’cause you’re gonna wanna gulp it! (my review)
- Kenyan black teas — Rich and caramelly with a hefty dose of caffeine.
- Sylvakandy Estate Orange Pekoe tea — Can’t get enough of this tea, with its strong, full body. A 6-cupper potful at breakfast is one of those things whose anticipation is more effective than an alarm clock to rouse me from my night’s slumber. (my review)
- Indian spiced chai — Spiced tea with some milk and sweetener is quite exhilarating first thing in the morning. (my review)
- Lapsang Souchong China black tea — The smoky allure will wake up your tastebuds and make you fit to face whatever the day has in store. (my review)
- Young Pu-erh Tea — A bit of an unusual flavor for a U.S. style breakfast, but nevertheless a great option. You may even find yourself craving this earthy fragrance and flavor on a daily basis. (my review part I and part II)
- Assam Tea— Of course you don’t want to leave out a tea that serves as the basis of a number of chais and breakfast blends.
More options abound, but any of the above will go with your menu of choice for that first breaking of the fast that starts your day.
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