Tea Staples, Fads, and Old Favourites

Pumpkin Spice Flavored Black Tea (ETS image)
Staple, fad, or favorite? Certainly seasonal: Pumpkin Spice Flavored Black Tea (ETS image)

Many tea drinkers will probably be familiar with the concept of staple teas. They are the ones that quickly become regular fixtures on your calendar of tea engagements, and continue to make regular appearances. For some people a staple tea might be one of the first teas they tried. For others, it might have taken a period of nomadic tea drinking before a staple tea, or two, emerged.

Some teas might, for a short phase, seem like staples, but could turn out to be more of a fad. These teas are a favourite of the moment but they quickly get replaced as you tire of them. Confusing fads and staples can be costly as you might purchase a sizeable amount of a tea only to have it fall out of fashion after a few weeks. Not only is this tea taking up valuable space in one of your tea storage containers, but you might end up having spent a lot of money on a tea you don’t really fancy drinking any more.

However, you may find that you revisit some of these teas at a later date. A tea may have been a favourite for a while, even a staple perhaps, but it may be that you have since drifted away from, and then returned to, it. These are the teas I call old favourites; they may not be a constant staple but they reappear in your tea preferences from time to time. Maybe this has to do with seasonal tendencies in your tea drinking, or maybe it’s just a tea that you enjoyed once, forgot about, and rediscovered.

As with most systems of categorisation, the lines between these groups are not rigid; the boundaries between fads, staples, and old favourites are blurry, and there are teas that you might find fit all, or none, of these categories. Or maybe this way of thinking doesn’t fit with your tea experiences at all. Whatever the case, if you are enjoying your tea, then you are going about it the right way.

See more of Elise Nuding’s articles here.

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