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With National Iced Tea Month in full swing, you might be wondering what kind of iced tea to make. Do you want to try something different from your normal iced tea? Then why not try a new tea to ice! Here are the types of tea that you can make into a refreshing glass of heaven. There is something for everyone.

Fruit and Caffeine Free – There has always been black or green tea with fruit but have you ever had a plain fruit tea? Fruit teas are usually tisanes, or otherwise known as herbal tea since it does not have caffeine in it. Many fruit teas made are usually fruit pieces, peels, flowers, and sometimes tea. Some herbal teas like chamomile and rooibos are the tea itself. More traditional teas like black and green sometimes have caffeine taken out, but take note that they are not completely caffeine free. Fruit teas are perfect for kids!

Green Tea is growing in popularity, so it is no surprise that iced green tea is trending. Many coffee and tea cafes sell iced green tea, either unflavored, unsweetened, or flavored and sweetened. Popular flavors for iced green tea include mint, lemon, and strawberry. The result is a cool, refreshing taste that will make you forget it’s summer.

White Tea is a young tea leaf with silvery white hairs that is picked early so get your iced tea early in the summer! Basic white is a good way to start but if you want to be more adventurous, try your white iced tea with a floral note and mild taste, the Pai Mu Tan White Tea. For a tropical flavor, go for the Oasis Mango White Tea, which provides a delicate but sweet flavor that will take you to the beach. Plus, white tea has a small amount of caffeine so iced white tea could give you a little pick-me-up.

Black Tea – The classic! Iced tea is normally made with black tea, especially in the case of Southern Sweet Tea. In general, iced black tea is the most popular type of iced tea in the US with raspberry, peach, and lemon being the most popular flavors. The best part about black tea is that there is so much variety of black tea. Darjeeling, Ceylon, Chai, if there is a black tea you prefer, you can ice it! Homemade iced tea allows you to customize it however you please. Add milk and sugar, unsweetened, or add some of your favorite fruit.

-CD

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garden-parties

If you have been a customer of ours for a while, you may have noticed a tea called the Buckingham Palace Garden Party. Did you know that it is inspired after an actual garden party? It’s true! The Buckingham Palace Garden Party is a tea party held annually so that members of the public can be invited and have a chance to see the gorgeous gardens of Buckingham Palace. The Queen actually hosts three garden parties during the summer at Buckingham Palace and one at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Scotland.

Garden parties were originally presentation parties in which debutantes attended but over the years, it has evolved as a way of recognizing those in public service. This is not an ordinary event in which you pay to attend. There is not even a way to apply for attendance directly through the Buckingham Palace. Guests are usually nominated by certain people who are connected to the Queen or the Royal Family such as Lord-Lieutenants, Government, Churches, or Services. Garden Parties are a way for the Queen to speak to a range of people who come from all walks of life and making a positive impact on the community. It is a way for members of the general public to be rewarded for being good samaritans.

On the day of the garden party, the gates open at 3pm and the party officially begins when the Queen and her family arrive an hour later at 4pm. You will know she is there when you hear God Save the Queen being played by a military band. During the party, guests often consume delicious cakes, delectable sandwiches, and refreshing cups of tea while strolling and marveling at the beautiful gardens of Buckingham Palace. The Queen and her husband the Duke of Edinburgh make rounds and talk to groups of people, so that they are able to mingle with everyone.

If you are lucky enough to receive an invitation to a Buckingham Palace garden party, one must dress for the occasion. Ladies wear dresses with a hat or a fascinator while men wear lounge suits or other casual morning wear. For those in military and other important guests wear official clothing such as uniforms. The fashion the Royal Family has worn to past garden parties have always been the talk of the town, the Queen, especially! At the 2017 Garden Party, Her Majesty wore a vibrant yellow ensemble

A Bit of History: Garden parties were being held as early as 1897!

Numbers: In just one garden party, around 27,000 cups of tea, 20,000 sandwiches, and 20,000 slices of cake are consumed*! Can you imagine how much work must go into making so much food?

-CD

*Source: https://royal.uk/garden-parties

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June is National Iced Tea Month in the US, marking the beginning of iced tea season. Around 85 percent of Americans take their tea iced, so it’s no surprise that it was given its own month and official day (June 10). To honor this day, here are a few things you can do to honor the icy cold drink.

 

Make ice from tea! If you love your tea iced but hate the watery taste coming from the ice, then make tea ice from your iced tea! Brew your tea as you normally would, flavor it to your liking and let it cool it down.  Once your tea is cool, pour some into an ice cube tray. Let it sit in the freezer until completely frozen. Add to your iced tea once it’s ready!

 

 

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Add your favorite juice to your iced tea! The late Arnold Palmer was not only known for golf but also his drink, the Arnold Palmer. An Arnold Palmer is a mix of half lemonade and half iced tea. You could also add other juices, like orange or watermelon, to make your iced tea even more refreshing!

 

 

 

Make sun tea! Sun tea is tea that is brewed and sitting in the sun. To make sun tea, get any size clear container with a lid and some tea bags of your choice. Fill the container with water and add the teabags. Let the container sit in the sun for about 2-4 hours. Once your sun tea is brewed, pour some in a glass and add ice!

 

Try a new iced tea like Thai iced tea, Taiwanese bubble tea, or iced Indian Chai. It’s funIndian Spiced Chai Tea  - Loose Leaf to be adventurous so when an opportunity comes to try a new iced tea, take it! Thai iced tea is Ceylon tea, milk, and sugar while bubble tea is made with Oolong tea (or any other tea to your liking) and has cooked and sweetened black tapioca pearls to add the bubble effect. Finally, Indian Chai tea is a mixture of black tea and Indian spices like cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves. Iced chai tea is so delicious and refreshing that you’ll wonder how you lived without it.

 

-CD

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So we talk a lot of the “do’s” of English tea but what about the “don’t’s”. Today we are bringing to you three things you should not do while enjoying English Tea. As always, this is for fun and you are perfectly allowed to drink your tea however you would like! We promise the tea police will not come after you. Or will they?

 

  1. DO NOT Stir Vigorously

This is almost common knowledge to a lot of people. Tea is a liquid and there is no need to be scraping your cup or sending flying tea off your spoon at your neighbor! Simply try not to make any sound while stirring, staying away from the bottom and sides of the cup. This is also helps to keep your cups looking perfectly new.

 

2. DO NOT Leave Your Spoon in the Cup

This is seen as lazy by those who are serious tea drinkers. Always remove your teaspoon and set it beside the cup. This is also helps so that you don’t hit yourself in the face with it!

 

3. DO NOT Place Lemon Wedges in your Tea

You know how we go out to dinner and get lemon in our water and simply let it float. This is not correct for proper English Tea. You may squeeze the lemon into your tea but do not keep the entire wedge in your tea.

 

Pinkies Up!!

 

-Alexis

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Seven years after the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, Royal

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Wedding fever has once again spread! Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are due to wed on May 19, 2018. The wedding will be televised by many networks, with coverage beginning as early as 4:00 AM Eastern time with the actual wedding beginning at 7:00 AM Eastern. Whether you are watching the wedding live or having a party in general, it’s a reason to celebrate!

A very important element is the flags. Prince Harry is a British prince marrying an American so that means Union Jacks and Stars and Stripes everywhere! Adorn the room with a large Union Jack or wave smaller ones. Head over to our sister site, United States Flag Store for American flags. Either way, it’s red, white, and blue!

Put the kettle on for anyone who drinks tea. Twinings is the tea of choice for Queen Elizabeth. In fact, she has her seal of approval on it, or Royal Warrant. Set out a box along with some biscuits. In fact, Prince William’s own wedding cake was a chocolate biscuit cake, which is chocolate and crushed digestives.

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You can make your own by using the Betty Crocker recipe below.

• Cake
o 1 pkg (8.8 oz) McVitie’s® chocolate digestives tea biscuits, rich tea biscuits, or sugar cookies.
o 1 ⅓ cups dark chocolate chips (8 oz)
o ⅔ cup whipping cream
o 2 tablespoons butter
• Frosting
o ⅔ cup dark chocolate chips (4 oz)
o ⅓ cup whipping cream
o 1 tablespoon butter
Directions
• 1. Line a 6- or 8-inch round cake pan with foil. Spray with nonstick cooking spray. Break each of the biscuits into 1-inch pieces; set aside.
• 2. In medium bowl, place 1 1/3 cup chocolate chips; set aside. In 1-quart saucepan, heat 2/3 cup whipping cream and 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat, stirring until butter is melted and mixture comes to a boil. Pour cream mixture over chocolate and stir smooth.
• 3. Add biscuit pieces to chocolate mixture, gently fold until all pieces are coated. Spoon into the prepared cake pan. Gently press mixture into pan. Refrigerate cake for 3 hours or until firm.
• 4. Remove cake from cake pan and turn upside down onto a serving plate. Remove foil. In small bowl place remaining 2/3 cup chocolate chips. In 1-quart saucepan, heat remaining 1/3 cup whipping cream and 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat, stirring until butter is melted and mixture comes to a boil. Pour cream mixture over chocolate and stir smooth. Pour the melted chocolate over the cake; frost top and sides using a butter knife or offset spatula. If desired, decorate with melted milk chocolate.
These are just a few ways to help get ready for the Royal Wedding. I know that I will be getting up early in the morning to watch it! Are you?
-CD

Thanks to Ahmad Tea of London we are bringing you a simple explanation of a few more types of tea time in England that we haven’t talked much about in our blog yet! These might fit some of our tea lovers lifestyles better than the ones we have already mentioned.

Cream Tea:

This type of tea often includes scones, clotted cream, marmalade or lemon curd and a cup of nice warm tea.

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Royale Tea:

This tea includes friends & family served with some alcohol (aka: champagne) at the beginning! You can also serve sherry at the end.

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Elevensies:

This one is simple & to the point and is my personal favorite. It is morning tea or coffee hour in England! So take a break from those emails and enjoy!

 

Celebration Tea:

Very similar to afternoon tea but with a cake to celebrate an occasion!

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There are many different types of tea depending on your schedule, who you are enjoying it with and why you are enjoying it. Most importantly, make sure to have fun with it! Bring out your fancy cups and best tea! (Don’t forget to take a picture for our Facebook page also!

 

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Moms are everywhere. Whether it’s your mom, your sister, your daughter, or a friend, all mothers are celebrated each year on Mother’s Day. If you are looking something to get for her, then English Tea Store has got you covered. We have Mother’s Day gifts Mom will love!

If the mother in your life loves bundles of goodies, then she will love our gift baskets. Specially picked and carefully packed basket is sure to delight the mom in your life. We have gift baskets to suit everyone’s fancy. Our tea gift baskets are some of the best, ranging from cream tea to Irish. We even carry an organic tea basket, not to mention one full of chocolate!

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If she does not fancy gift baskets and is a big tea drinker, then our gift sets are sure to please her! If Mom needs an electric kettle or needs to replace an old one, try one of our kettle gift sets. Our starter set comes with an Ovente electric kettle, two bags of tea of your choosing, and a teapot with a rose gloss finish. If there are no kettles or teapots involved, try a gift set with a mug. Each English Tea Store mug and tea set comes with a flavor variety, such as British favorites and Morning Blends. We also have mug sets in which you choose from a selection of flavors.

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My own mother was a big candy lover, so for those moms with a sweet tooth there is a wide selection of sweets to please that sweet tooth. One favorite of moms is chocolate. Try a large bar of sweet, creamy, and melty Cadbury Dairy Milk or a cool, refreshing bar of Nestle Mint Aero. However, not all moms enjoy chocolate. Chewy candies like Jelly Babies, Wine Gums are familiar favorites, but there could be new favorites like Rowntree’s Randoms or Pick and Mix. Rowntree’s Randoms are fun to enjoy, especially with filled jellies and foam sweets and in shapes you never thought you would see in candy, like hats and paintbrushes. Pick and Mix is a familiar mixture of Tooty Frooties, Fruit Gums, and Fruit Pastilles.

No matter who your mom is, thank her in any way you can. Happy Mother’s Day!
-CD

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It’s a boy! Prince William and Duchess Kate welcomed Prince Louis Arthur Charles on April 23, 2018. The new prince is now the fifth in line to succeed the throne, right below his older brother George and sister Charlotte. The birth of a new royal is always a reason to celebrate. That is why in honor of the new prince, we should make a toast with tea. Not just any tea, though. I believe it is more fitting to celebrate with tea approved by the Royal Family.

Enjoy some Twinings tea, which has the Royal Warrant. Now what is a Royal Warrant? Royal Warrant.jpgThey are products or services to the British Royal Family that are granted a mark of recognition, or also known as a seal of approval. If you see the Queen’s, Prince Philip’s, or Prince Charles’ crests on a product, you will be able to tell whose warrant it is. It’s not just products that are given these warrants, but services like optical services or stores. Some warrants are even given by two of the royals or even all three of the royals with warrants. In Twinings’ case, it has the warrant of the Queen. You will notice the crest above the Twinings logo if you take a look at it.

Taylors of Harrogate has a Royal warrant given to them by Prince Charles. You will see his crest right on the box. You can normally see his crest atop the Yorkshire Gold logo on the box but is also seen on other Taylors of Harrogate products. Other items we carry with Royal Warrants include Cadbury chocolate (the American version does not have the royal warrant), HP Sauce, and Weetabix. The warrants may not be on the very front of the product, so you may find them either on the side or the back.

It is no doubt that Prince Louis and his siblings will be using these products and services someday. Their own family has influence of official products, as Prince William and Prince George will eventually have their own royal warrants. They may give these warrants to the same companies or they may give them to someone who has never had one before. For now, enjoy the ones approved by the Queen!

-CD

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The first day of May marks a celebration in the UK, the arrival of spring. It’s known as a public holiday (or bank holiday) which is normally observed on the first Monday in May. This is so that people could go out and celebrate the day by enjoying it in the gorgeous weather. The tradition is said to have originated as a pagan Roman festival celebrating the arrival of warmer days.

Traditional May Day activities include Morris Dancing, which is a folk dance. It is said

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the dance is done to banish the dark Winter and celebrate the warmth and fertility of Spring and Summer. The music is made by an accordion, a fiddle, a fife (a flute), and drums. Special costumes are worn along with bell pads on the shins. Some wear tatter jackets or wear white with colored belts, or baldrics, on their chests.The Morris Dance involves rhythmic dancing and choreography. Morris dancing varies on the region, whether you are in the North West or Cotswolds or the Welsh Border, but in recent years, Morris Dancing has made it to the US. The dance is done from California to New York with its popularity growing each year.

Another May Day dance is the Maypole dance, which is done with a pole beautifully decorated with a garland and colorful ribbons. There are two forms of the dance. One is circle dancing around the pole. The other dance is taking a ribbon from the Maypole and dancing around in a circle, creating a braid on the pole as they dance. The dance is not only popular in the UK but also Germany and Sweden, as well.

Many towns and cities hold a May Day festival each year with its own Morris dancing and Maypole dancing, as well as food and flowers. Flower wreaths are made and a May Queen is crowned while you may see a Green Man, representing Spring, walking about town.

-CD

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Every year, April is known as Earth Month due to Earth Day taking place on April 20. Since 1970, we have taken the time to reuse and recycle in a bigger effort to preserve the planet. More companies are turning to biodegradable or eco-friendly products and some shops are doing away with paper or plastic bags.

 

So how can you do your part to help preserve our planet Earth? It starts right in your tea collection. If you have a teapot or mug that is chipped, cracked, or if they handle has broken off and you can no longer use it, don’t toss them out, get creative! To start, create a small garden using old teapots and mugs! If you have some soil and seeds or a small plant, you can easily fill the old teapots and mugs with soil and place plants or seeds inside. Water according to directions and watch them grow! As an added bonus, your plants will look extra gorgeous in your old teaware! Just remember to drill a small hole on the bottom of each container.

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Reuse old tea bags once you’re done using them for your cup of tea. Instead of tossing out the teabags, you can reuse the leaves and add them to a compost pile. If your tea bags are made from a biodegradable or compostable material, then you can add the whole tea bag to your compost. Once the compost is ready, you can use it for your gardening needs! If you have leftover tea, use it to color Easter eggs during Easter time. You can also make tea ice cubes so you do not waste tea or water. Once the cubes are frozen, enjoy them in a glass of iced tea.

 

And with spring cleaning in full swing, you may be cleaning out your tea cupboard or containers and you discover you have old or extra teabags. Don’t toss those out! Use them around the house instead! Use them to deodorize your cat’s litter box. Simply spread some loose tea leaves into the box and change it out along with the cat litter each time. Use dry green or black tea to deodorize your refrigerator. Place an uncovered container of it in the fridge to help control odors in it. Spread some leaves over your carpet, leave in for about 20 minutes, and then vacuum up!

 

Tea is straight from the Earth and it can go right back in. Help take care of the Earth this Earth Day. What are some of your favorite ways of going green?

 

-CD

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