We’re a nation of tea lovers but now more and more Brits are indulging in more than just a builder’s brew with milk and two sugars. There’s no better time to become a cuppa connoisseur.
The tea industry is brewing up a storm – don’t mind the pun – and even though the trusty old 10am builder’s cup has seen us through bad days at work and cold nights in front of the TV, Britain is joining the revolution with teas being served in fancy cocktails and cool smoothies.
A cuppa now counts for 40% of everything we drink in the UK, which totals up to 165 million cups a day, according to www.tea.co.uk. A study done by Waitrose saw a 7% increase in tea sales from January 2013 to January 2014.
The Return of the Tea
On almost every street corner there is a Starbucks or a Costa but now teashops are creeping up around the country offing offering high quality teas, fancy tea cocktails and cool tea smoothies.
Marina Krstic, Tea Expert at Amanzi Tea in Marylebone, London says: “We offer 40 different types of teas… beneficial blends, kids blends, herbal blends. All our teas are the first two grades, which means the best quality and none of them are blended with artificial flavours so they are real fruits, real oils and real flowers.”
As a nation we are the most educated we have ever been about what goes into our bodies.
Even though tea used to only be drunk for the caffeine hit, surprisingly,there are a lot of health benefits to drinking tea.
“Generally they [tea] are very high in antioxidants, minerals and vitamins,” adds Krstic. “White teas in particular are very high in antioxidants because they only contain tea buds.
“Green tea is very good for general health and mental illness and all oolong teas are famous for weight loss and digestion because they’re semi-fermented so they reduce the fat.”
A steaming cup of gun powder Tea from Amanzi
Oolong is tea that is produced in China through a process which includes oxidizing the plant (the camellia sinensis), under a strong sun so it begins to shrivel.
Herbal teas are becoming popular to drink after meals as they reduce our metabolic rate. It has also been argued that drinking two or three cups of tea a day can fight mental illness and shrink cancer cells, as they are high in antioxidants and minerals.
A Japanese study involving more than 40,000 people concluded that drinking more than five cups of tea a day reduces the risks of strokes and heart attacks by up to 26%.
Inside Amanzi Tea
Mums Love it Too
Tea is becoming especially popular with expectant mothers because of the low caffeine count.
“Parents also give their children tea because of this reason. We have a lot of child-friendly green tea mixed with things like coconut, which is nice iced and a lot of mothers will buy for their kids,”Krstic says.
Child-friendly tea drinks are becoming after increasingly popular after Starbucks introduced ‘babyccinos’ which is essentially a cappuccino without the coffee. However caffeine-free tea drinks come in more variety and flavours.
Want to know more about Amanzi tea? Watch Marina Krstic talk you through their tea range:
More than 60.2 billion cups of tea are consumed each year in Britain and the tea trend is at an all-time high, with stores like Bubbleology, which sells blended iced or hot teas served with chewy tapioca balls that are sucked up through giant straws, also becoming popular.
“If you’ve seen the store, you’ll know we are a science,” says Joseph Cocklin, manager of Bubbleology Soho. “Our staff wear lab coats, we have chemistry sets in the window and everything is top secret.”
Joseph Cocklin talks more about Bubbleology here: