Tea pet peeves
My tea pet peeve is when people say: “Oh I LOVE tea! I love chamomile, and hibiscus, and peppermint, oh, and Dr. Oz said I should try bilberry and chickweed for my headaches and indigestion!” Not all the plants that can be steeped in water are Camilla sinensis. Nothing wrong with herbals, but call a raspberry leaf a raspberry leaf. I swear- if I threw a chair in a hot tub- someone would call it “chair tea”.
I find it almost pointless to get a cup of tea at a restaurant or cafe.
Even if they have nice, loose leaf teas, they’re usually made with the wrong amount of tea or water of a questionable temperature, or in a Brewt or pot that will inevitably oversteep half your tea, or they bring it to you already steeping so you have no idea how long it’s been sitting already. Then I just end up disappointed.
Oddly, my best experience with this so far as been at Sailsbury House, which is kind of a greasy-spoon trying to be classier kind of restaurant. They actually told me how much longer to steep it when it came to the table, the pot was small enough that most of it fit in my cup, and the tea leaves were good quality and I got a really nice second steep out of them. Weird!
Table 52 in Chicago serves Tea Gschwendner teas, that was nice! Of course, TG is right around the corner from them.
I agree with the restaurant/cafe thing! Plus, sometimes if I ask about their selection of tea, they just respond with a simple “black or green tea” with a look like I must be slow or something.
One of the restaurants near me has Numi teas, and a good selection.
I actually have a fair number of places around me that have good quality loose leaf teas, in a good selection, but then can’t brew them well.
If it seems iffy but I still want tea I’ll usually just order a black tea that I know I can dump a bunch of milk and sugar into, or something herbal that isn’t going to be sensitive to temperature or long steeping.
I just ask for boiling water and use my own tea bag. They have never charged me or looked at me funny. (Well maybe they do behind my back) Usually the waitstaff says some thing like, “Oh, I love tea, too. The stuff they have here is horrible.”
I ask for hot water from coffee places sometimes. My bag usually has some emergency tea in it. (Most places are nice about the water, and don’t charge.)
I find especially here in the US it is a pain just to get hot enough water. Often at a restaurant (me armed with my own tea) they’ll give me a cup something a little hotter than lukewarm. I could maybe steep gyokuro in that, but it’s too cool for everything else!
My tea pet peeve is tea snobs. I hate going into a store to buy tea only to have the sales person correcting how I pronounce something and assuming I’m a total idiot with tea knowledge. I hate it when some tea snobs turn their noses up at those just learning teas new to them. Or those who think teabags are for the people who know nothing about tea. Yes, I know tea bags are not the greatest quality tea but I have had some good ones in teabags and sometimes I just like the convenience.
I usually skip the tea bags, but one of the tastiest teas I’ve ever had was in tea bags (that I found in my office, that someone else had left behind.) It was a very cardamom heavy masala chai and I’ve never been able to find it again, or find anything comparable in loose leaf.
I agree about the tea snobs. I know a fair amount about tea (at least the kinds of tea I like). When I go into a shop and they treat me like I’m an idiot I get upset. I asked about a flavored matcha (like the yummy ones from Red Leaf) and they looked at me as if I was subhuman. "We only have the good matchas!
Whittards selling tea to you in quantities that they dictate
Over priced tea shops
Pretentiousness around tea – how cool am I that I have drank this aged oolong from 1856 that was urinated on by monkeys 5000 metres up a taiwanese mountain
Peoples general ignorance plumping for teabags – why settle for inferiority?
The price difference in a pot of tea between various establishments
People making green tea with boiling water
Work people who leave the bag in the pot and then serve it to people leaving it all manky and stewed
Calling chamomile and peppermint TEA! Aaaaargh!
Our lack of tea vendors in the UK – especially in a place as big as Manchester
I think that’s all for now
I mostly just hate being judged for my love of tea. Family frequently mention my tea habit to others in an “isn’t she cuckoo” sort of way. They also decline to offer me tea because they think I won’t like it from a bag. I guess I don’t like it when people presume I’m a tea snob.
This! It took me a while to make my mother-in-law stop apologising for the tea they served, your ordinary garden-variety supermarket bag, saying ‘oh it’s probably not as good as you’re used to.’ Well, no, it isn’t, but it’s what you’ve got. I’d feel bad if she felt she had to run out and buy Speshul Tea to cater to my particular needs, when I’ll happily drink whatever everyone else is having. Besides, when we come home and I have that first cup of quality black, I appreciate it so much more.
It’s nice to be offered, even if it isn’t the tea I would have made it home, it is the one you’re making here and I would either love a cup or will decline politely and get some water. I’m not judging your tea, I swear! Sometimes, I just like water. Same goes if I decline coffee or alcohol. Not pregnant, just not interested! Sometimes I think my liquid choices are the only thing people worry about.
Teavana sales tactics.
Here is one a friend of mine shared. She served some loose tea in an infuser to a family member and after the family member made a cup she immediately tossed the loose tea into the trash, apparently unaware that you can re-steep premium teas and make more than one cup.
I got so many! I should keep track as when they come up I tweet about it in rage.
Biggest one: Tea Drinkers who diss/make fun of other fellow tea drinkers for adding sugar in their tea. It’s like being looked down upon, like you are drinking crap tea, the tea drinker is a noob, sugar ruins the tea, breaking “tradition” and nonsugar adding drinkers are better than them.
It’s just silly as there’s nothing wrong with enhancing your tea – it might taste better with a little sugar. It’s culturally ingrained for some to add milk and sugar so that’s a slap in the face for some to get made fun of to add sugar. Just be happy others are drinking tea too.
I look down on places that add the sugar for… either to blends or samples. It’s a personal taste thing. I like a little if I make masala chai.
yes on that side it is annoying, let us add our own sugar. I had a sample from Teavana that I think is almost 50% rock sugar.