Are you sweet or unsweet?
I use soy cream or coconut milk but no sugar or sweets in black teas. Nothing in green or white or yellow teas. I’m still experimenting with pu-erhs and oolongs and don’t know how I’ll like them.
I never add sweetener to my tea ever, unless I’m icing it.
Milk very occasionally in some black teas, either because I want to see how it blends with the flavour, which is rarely really succesful. I can’t remember where I saw it now, but I saw a few days ago a list of ‘recommended milk teas’ which included some teas that frankly made me go O.o I can’t imagine that Ti Kuan Yin, for example, (Yes, I kid you not!) would be any sort of drinkable with milk in it. Yuck.
I can add a little milk to some very specific black teas like Assams or Lapsang Souchong, but it’s extremely rare that I do so.
Depending on the tea, I usually sweeten my iced tea. (I do live in the South, ya know!) My hot tea is usually straight up…sometimes a little sweetener if it’s too strong. I use brown sugar in my chais.
Sweet tea makes me sick, but I just may try brown sugar in my chais. I have a Maple Sugar black that brown sugar would be really good in.
if you prep your chais traditionally, (like I do) brown sugar is the way to go.
Sick? Meaning sick to your stomach or nauseous? Or meaning that you don’t like it?
It gives me a really bad taste in my mouth like my teeth are rotting.
Unsweet; I want to taste the tea, not the additions. A little half-and-half in stronger teas, but only during cold months to buck myself up at breakfast time.
Yes, a bit of honey or sugar. Just a bit.
Have you tried flavored honeys like the Republic of Tea carries?
No, I haven’t! I didn’t know those existed! Any flavour suggestions?
I haven’t tried either of them, but they both sound AMAZING.
Indian black teas (excluding Darjeelings) get a little sugar and milk. Everything else is plain.
I am a total sweettooth, and a lot of the time, for me the flavors don’t actually come out until I add a little sweetner. So, yeah, I know it’s not the purist way, but I sweeten.
However, I’ve having a lot of angst over that to use these days. I am trying to cut back on calories, but can’t find anything artifical I want to use in my tea. Everyone has their own take on what has an aftertaste and what doesn’t. The one that doesn’t have an aftertaste for me is sacchrine, but with the amount of tea I’ve been drinking lately, I don’t want to drink that much of it! I was trying a stevia/sugar blend, but it’s been getting bitter on me. :( So I’m going to have to go to sugar/honey or try and train myself to drink unsweetened.
Unsweetened is best, and artificial sweeteners are even worse than sugar so try just stevia or stevia/honey.
I use raw sugar and for me, I can get by using a lot less of it than I did white sugar and there’s no nasty artificial aftertaste. It does, however, taste a little different than white sugar so you might not like that.
I do on the VERY rare occasion like raw sugar in Fava Tea Co.‘s Maple Sugar black- but only like half a packet. Adagio’s amber sugar crystals are amazing too. I guess I’m ok w/ sweetening that slightly because it already has sugar in it. But for Maple Sugar, maple syrup is best:)
Maybe try one of Republic of Tea’s flavored honeys?
The things that you say are best, whether it be unsweetened tea or using maple syrup, are merely your opinions as to what is best. Ultimately, there is no right or wrong to drinking tea – it is just what one prefers and allows you to get the most enjoyment out what you have.
Touche Auggy, I meant best health wise.
I suppose that depends on whether one is drinking tea for health or for other reasons. For myself I drink tea in a spirit of exploration in pursuit of sensual pleasure. It provides a calm breath between stressful moments and enjoyable sensuality on weekends. What is best for me in my tea is what tastes best or feels best. And this, of course, is different from day to day and from tea to tea.
As to health, I find it hard to believe that a cup of tea with a teaspoon of sugar or stevia or honey or anything else when drunk as part of an otherwise healthy diet has much of an effect. It is all about balance and self-wisdom, I think. And self-wisdom is something best left to the individual self to decide on.
I find the concept that drinking tea has iron-clad purist rules that should be obeyed to be an uncomfortable idea and not in the spirit of my tea drinking. (Though other people’s lives vary. Anyone who wishes to seek a purist relationship with their tea is fine by me as long as they don’t demand that I comply as well.)
Well said Carolyn.
I completely agree Carolyn. But the truth remains that there are heath benefits in tea and drinking it neat is the healthiest… But whatever reason you drink tea and whatever way you like it- go for it:)
Thank you, Carolyn.
Agreed, Carolyn! That sounds like the perfect Tea Drinker’s Manifesto!
It depends on my mood and the tea (some teas, like Earl Grey, are always black). Generally I drink it plain, but sometimes I’ll add honey and lemon, or milk and sugar. When I add things it tends to be more of a comfort thing, or I’m looking for a treat.
I’m a little late to the “non” sweetener party it seems. Sweeties are in the minority here (although everyone is a real sweetie as far as I’m concerned ;)
I really really tried to do the straight black with no sugar or milk, but just can’t bring myself to commit. There’s some kind of magic that happens when black tea, milk, and sugar unite to be one with the universe. If it’s herbal I can get by with no milk or sugar, but I love my black tea family too much to part with them.
I can say that the milk and sugar should not over-power the taste of the tea. I put just enough in to take the tannin edge off. What’s left is a little slice of happy pie. :)