Tea Culture in Europe

by ESP Tea Lover 23. November 2011 10:14

The tea culture in Europe is quite unique and distinct. Not only is it about the way the tea is consumed, but it is also about how it is made as well as the social aspect of it.


In the Czech Republic the tea culture has been evolving and developing for centuries. Recently, the style of tea rooms has been a hot topic in this area as they differ from the more traditional British style tea rooms. The tea rooms in the Czech Republic are very diverse and offer a wide assortment of teas. The most exclusive tea rooms can have up to eighty different types of teas from multiple different countries. The most unique fact is that these different tea rooms have all developed their own style by creating different blends of the teas along with different ways of serving them.


Russia also has a unique tea culture. The method in which the tea is served usually involves an expensive tea glass that is made from silver as well as other alloys- sometimes the tea glasses are even gold plated. Russian tea culture dictates that the tea be brewed separately and then diluted with water that has just been boiled. The tea that is served is usually quite strong. In fact, it is thought that the strength of the tea is an indication of the hospitality of the host. In Russia drinking tea is an event that is traditionally for the whole family. The tea is generally served after a large meal along with things such as jams and pastries. It should be noted that in Russia black tea is the most common and traditional tea bags are not. A traditional Russian tea time consists of loose leaf black tea.


Though not as popular as other parts of Eastern Europe, there is a tea ritual in Slovakia. Interestingly enough, the tea culture in Slovakia is considered somewhat underground by the residents of this region. However, there are numerous tea rooms that have gained popularity in many mid-sized towns. The thing about these tea rooms that have made them popular is the fact that they offer a quiet environment that has relaxing music for the patrons. Of equal importance is the fact that they are almost all non-smoking establishments. This is in sharp contrast to the pubs that are located in the country.
In regard to tea culture in Germany, it is most popular in the eastern part of the country. The eastern region has a very strong to various tea traditions. In fact, tea is so popular hear that it is often drank at all hours of the day. The typical German tea will have three layers to it. The top layer is mostly cream, the middle layer is the tea itself and the bottom layer is a sugary candy that melts slowly. It is against tradition to mix all three of these elements together as it will ruin the ability to savor the tea in general. Tea in Germany is always served with cookies during the week and cakes during the weekend or special events. In addition, the German style tea is thought to cure headaches, upset stomachs as well as relieve stress.


Even though France is better known for its different types of coffee, afternoon tea drinking has long been part of the culture for the wealthy and elite. The most popular tea in France is black tea. However, other types such as green tea and Asian tea are becoming more mainstream.  Afternoon tea in France is usually served with sugar, milk or lemon. Furthermore, when drinking tea it will almost always be accompanied by a pastry. The interesting thing about the pastries is that they are usually of the non-sweet variety.
 Portugal has a growing tea culture that is most dominant on the Azores- a series of islands that are located to the west of the mainland. An interesting fact is that Portugal was the first European country to indulge in tea drinking as well as the being the country responsible for introducing tea to the rest of the continent. The production of tea in Portugal dates back to the mid 1750’s and is still being produced today. The tea production in Portugal is focused on an organic growing process where no pesticides or herbicides are allowed. However, the general production standards for tea in Portugal have not changed for the better part of two and a half centuries- neither has the way in which the population consumes it.

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Traditions

Green Tea & Arthritis

by Elena Popec 5. January 2011 15:49

 

 

Loose leaf green tea may be a delectable way to help prevent arthritis. Green tea comes from the camellia sinensis plant, which is the same plant that white, oolong, and loose leaf black teas come from. However, it is processed in a different way which results in its unique, vegetal flavor. Green tea undergoes less oxidation than oolong tea or black tea and this leaves it with more antioxidants, polyphenols, catechins, vitamins, and nutrients than those types of tea.

Arthritis and how green tea may help
   

Arthritis is a debilitating condition that causes inflammation of the joints. It can be extremely painful and cause stiffness and weakness. It can interfere with your quality of life and even impede upon basic daily tasks. It can become difficult to climb stairs or even to type, walk, or prepare food. Drinking green tea may help with rheumatoid arthritis. It contains polyphenols that may help to reduce the severity of this condition. Green tea may delay the onset of arthritis and even after the condition sets in, regular consumption of green tea may result in a more mild form of it.

Green tea is not a cure
   
There is no known cure for arthritis, and while drinking tea on a regular basis may help to prevent it or delay the onset, it is not a cure. And it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle, a healthy diet, and daily exercise. While green tea has many health benefits, it’s not a miracle cure for everything. However, it can’t harm you, and in fact is better for you than other types of drinks. It tastes delicious, and yet has no calories. It is a tasty treat that will help improve your health and quality of life over time.

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Green Tea

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