Tea drinking is a cultural phenomenon in Britain. No other European nation consumes as much tea as the British. Although it seems the popularity of tea has almost been replaced by espresso nowadays, it still has a privileged place in British kitchens.
The author of this article realizes that hardly anyone reading this has a motivation to become a keen tea drinker. However, they can learn something new about the strangers living on the other side of the Channel.
Forget about herbs1, fruits and flavours. If you want to drink tea like a Brit make sure you’ve bought black tea. Tea bags are fine even though some conservative tea drinkers would frown2 on them as they prefer tea leaves.
Forget about honey and lemons. Although it isn’t completely impossible, the truth is – as you know – that British tea is drunk with milk and perhaps some sugar. And again, there have been some heated debates3 whether you should put milk into the cup first or whether it is alright to add a splash of milk right into the tea. You choose.
Forget about other drinks. Tea is drunk in the morning, at lunch, in the afternoon as well as in the evening. No matter how boring it sounds, a cup of tea can be offered and chosen at any time, although the popularity of other drinks, especially espresso, is rising.
Forget about medical treatment. Do you have a headache? Have you suffered a shock? Well, in Britain you will probably not need painkillers4 and pills. All you need is a nice cup of tea! Tea (apart from aspirin) is believed to be the answer to most problems. At least it used to be….
Now it is your turn!
Do you know how to make a cup of British tea? Put the following lines a) – f) into a logical order and number them 1 – 6.
a) Pour boiling water on the leaves or the tea bag.
b) Put the kettle on.
c) Pour the tea in the cup.
d) Put some loose tea leaves or a tea bag into a heated teapot.
e) Wait for 2 to 5 minutes until the tea is ready.
f ) Add fresh milk and sugar, although some people prefer their milk in the cup first.
VOCABULARY: 1 bylinky – možná netuší; 2 mračiť sa – mračit se; 3 vášnivé debaty; 4 liek proti bolesti – lék tišící bolest