Sunday, March 14, 2010

Are you a fan of tea or coffee?

Personally, there's nothing more seductive than an early morning brew - whether it's coffee or tea. Both drinks bring a measure of warmth and serenity to a chaotic world of Blackberry's, deadlines and schedules. It's the taxi-driver's mate, a lawyer's best friend, or a stay-at-home parent's companion.

The only difference in my eyes, is that tea has a spiritual aura surrounding this fabulous drink. While I always imagine coffee drinkers to have foam solidifying on their upper lips, whilst juggling a suitcase, laptop and a Blackberry on their way to work.

I've always wondered why this is the case. Why the coffee drinker has always been mocked and ridiculed for being an addict, while tea drinkers have gotten away with such abuse. It may be the fact that coffee houses in the 17th Century were formed alongside insurance companies to attract new customers. Or it could be the fact we picture coffee drinkers with yellow teeth, a nose which is dipped in espresso and blood-shot eyes. Not to mention coffee takes a significant portion out of one's weekly expenses.

However, tea has gone trendy as well - to the point of being frivolous. Many tea houses now package tea leaves in swanky designer boxes, delicate porcelain teapots, cups and saucers. I'm intimidating to go to tea houses now, in fear that I wouldn't know what white monkey jasmine tea is. I'm much more happy using a tea bag from Tetley and eating it with an apple and pecan cake.

They've also got many interesting concoctions, such as watered downed Turkish apple and cinnamon, white flowery pekoe or green rooibos with berries. It sounds like a lawn mower has gone through his mulch, picked out the odd berries and tree roots from it and brewed it for afternoon tea. I can feel many tea drinkers whose preferred poison is an English Breakfast shaking their heads at the way tea is now being marketed.

For me, my favourite poison is this humble drink:
With the taste of chai, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, pepper and ginger - it's consumed hot and sweet, with the sugar bringing out the full flavour of the spices.

However, I feel chai latte has gone way too sweet for my liking, with cafes scrimping on the spices and increasing the amount of sugar to save money. Or am I merely just imagining such things?

Now it's over to you. Are you a coffee or tea drinker? Do you think cafes are scrimping on ingredients to save costs?

Happy reading!


the crackfox. said...

... Now I really, really feel like a mocha. Or turkish apple tea. Om nom nom.

gigdiary said...

You write so well, I really should check back here more often. Even when writing about flitty topics you always manage to give a subtle twist. I could read you everyday in the SMH with your own column. Keep doin' it. You got talent, girl.

Siobhan said...

ahh, tea, how I love thee, let me count the ways.I love this brand of teas called 'Pukka',oh they are amazing. Fennel&peppermint*coriander seed and rose, sounds horrendous but utterly delish.
I do love a coffee however, used to LURVE a chai latte but they are SO sickly now.

Kate said...

I drink both, but I'll pound back cheap coffee (Tim Horton's at best, but a mug of instant store brand works too, maybe even just a caffeine pill) but I'll have a cuppa tea if I actually want to savour it.

Black for both tea and coffee, though. None of that "put extra shit in it" that you get at Starbucks.

Another David said...

I'm definitely a coffee drinker. I always find the taste of tea to be too thin for me, same reason I don't like Gatorade.

Coffee definitely has spiritual meaning to some cultures, though. Some Arab cultures have entire ceremonies surrounding grinding, steeping, and serving.

Mel said...

I'm all about the coffee, and am even happy to admit I'm a wee bit of an addict.

I do love the earl gray though. I feel so grown up when I drink tea!

Death Wears Diamond Jewellery said...

coffee for sure. thou i do love chai lattes too. turkish apple tea is divine

Rosie said...

You are not alone - powdered chai has gotten far too sweet.

Try finding a cafe with T2 loose chai, it is far better.

Alex. said...

I love the smell of coffee but the taste is revolting I think!

I like tea :)

Anonymous said...

I like both tea and coffee, although my favourite tea is Chai. I do think the powdered variety is a bit sweet, will take the advice of Rosie and try T2 chai leaves instead.

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