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||Where can I buy Liptons Yellow Label Tea Bags in the UK|
|Nicey replies: Good grief! The same insipid stuff that is foisted upon us the moment we step off of the shores of blighty? Pick some up on your next booze cruise to Calais I would reckon.
I was prompted to remember this by your poll. I always refuse to call herbal tea 'tea'. Surely a drink must contain tea leaves to qualify for the moniker. What's your view? I think they should be called "herbal tea-like drink infusion", so those expecting actual tea from the misleading label will not be disappointed again. I can see why this might not catch on though...
|Nicey replies: Oh quite. I mean coffee doesn't get all this grief does it? Occasionally chicory or something tries to get involved, but it does have completely random things like stinging nettles, stinky old camomile, rose-hips or blackcurrant leaves passing themselves off as it. If I was tea I would be very indignant, and demand that they only assume the title of "herbal infusion", and use a different shelf entirely in the supermarket.
You may be able to shed some light on the amount of time a tea-bag should be left standing in the mug/cup after the hot water has been poured on. I give the mixture a couple of stirs then generally leave the kitchen, watch the tv in the lounge for no more than ten seconds, or walk to the lounge window and back which seems to provide reasonable timing.
However, a friend, Ian, uses his spoon to squash the tea-bag into the bottom of the mug/cup, which he then leaves for no less than four minutes. His tea tastes ‘stewed’ to me, but it made we wonder what the guidelines are?
How long does it take to brew the perfect cuppa and at what stage is it stewed?
|Nicey replies: John,
Of course this is a very important subject you have raised. Whilst it would be very satisfying to have a definitive answer so that anybody who veered from it could be roundly denounced as 'doing it all wrong', alas there isn't one. I mean personally I'm with you, and modern tea bags are made to deliver the goods very quickly in terms of brew time. However there will be some like your mate Ian who genuinely like the taste of stewed tea, (which it most certainly is). The fact that he wrings the bag, actually contributes to a stewed flavour. Now thats well and good, and if that's how he likes it then who are we to disagree, however, he should accept that he does like his tea stewed, and that in general most other people don't. If he were to make tea for the majority of other people in this way then they would pour it down the sink.
||Dear Nicey and the good lady Wife,|
To say that I enjoy a nice cup of tea and a sit down certainly would be an understatement. In fact, I can in all honestey say that a sizable proportion of my working day is not only spent sitting down and drinking tea but also thinking about the lovely cup of tea and sit down that I'm going to have when I get home.
Unfortunately, however, my girlfreind, as is often the case, is not as well groomed in her tea drinking habits as I and frequently commits the almost unforgivable crime of failing to finish her cuppa. Which brings me to the point of this communique...
Last night, as we were both enjoying The Glimmer Man starring Steven Seagal, the cat, who is not averse to a bit of mishief, hopped up onto the coffee table and started lapping at her unfinished cuppa. Jeannette moved to chastise her but I intervened, pointing out what an incredibly well cultured cat we must have and how she should be encouraged to drink tea. And then, if that was not impressive enough, the dog, who's behaviour is readily influenced by that of the cat, then followed suit and finished off what was left. Fantastic!
From this day forth the cat shall always be welcome to hop up onto the table and share a cuppa with me - but not the dog, because she frequently visits the cat's litter tray and eats her poo.
I wonder if any of your other readers out there have any tea loving pets.
|Nicey replies: Well I can understand your pride in your cat's taste for tea, and of course dogs as you so rightly point out will of course eat virtually anything. I always think those Mr Dog pet food commercials are funny when the woman in the evening dress tempts her small white scotty dog with a plate of Mediterranean herb flavoured dog food (or something like that) with a small red rose on one side. I'm sure like most dogs it would be just as keen to get its teeth into the crust from the top of a cow pat.
Anyhow enough of this unsavory topic. I think the main concern is if you have to start making the cat a cup of tea as-well it could become a bit of a chore.
A colleague informs me that when she went to Sorrento last year all the tea (and she sampled several pots in different establishments) tasted like fish. I have never been to Italy myself, but perhaps others have experienced this phenomenon while holidaying there?
Loving your work
|Nicey replies: Oh how I wish I had a fish icon.|