Last week, I got a chance to come to the launching of Twinings' Royal Diamond Jubilee Blend. Although I'm a tea person, I came to the event a bit skeptical, but it turned out to be a fun gathering. I learned a lot about British tea tradition :).
I sampled three kinds of tea: Lady Grey (the blue sachet), Passionfruit Mango Orange (the brown sachet) and Royal Diamond Jubilee blend (the canister).
First brew: Lady Grey
Mr Stephen Twining, the tenth generation of the Twining family, came to the event and imparted his knowledge on the essence of tea. To brew teabags, he said that we needed to put 6 teabags into the teapot. The water temperature should be 100 degree Celsius.
"After you put in the teabags, you can have polite conversation for three minutes to wait for the tea. Don't juggle the teabags, for it will make the tea too dark," he said.
The first brew is Lady Grey, which is the milder version of Earl Grey. Lady Grey contains orange and lemon peel and it feels refreshing to sip the tea in the afternoon.
Mr Twining said that there were three rules on tea. First: tea should be enjoyed as its original flavor. Second: putting sugar into the tea is barbaric! Third: if you think the second rule is wrong, go back to the first rule. (Oh dear, I'm barbaric as charged)
However...Mr Twining previously said that tea was a personal choice. You can have it anytime, anywhere, in any way you like it. The MC (Iwet Ramadan) reminded Mr Twining of his previous statement, while adding,"So it's okay to add sugar, right? Because it's our personal choice to add sugar."
"Um, yes," he said, reluctantly,"But the tea is still best enjoyed without sugar."
He later told us that he lived with his cousin who always added two blocks of sugar into his tea. He hatched a plan to abort his cousin's habit. So he tried to come home earlier than his cousin, brewed the tea and put the sugar spoon next to his cousin's teacup. His cousin thought the tea already contained sugar and drunk it without suspicion.
After a few weeks, his cousin's sugar consumption for the tea dropped to zero. The cousin even told Mr Twining that,"Hey, you brew better tea lately." Mr Twining replied,"That's because there's no sugar in it." Hahaha, doesn't he sound like a tea police?
The second brew: Royal Diamond Jubilee
They were my table fellows. Following Mr Twinings' rules, we stirred the tea after five minutes.
Then we poured it. Royal Diamond Jubilee blend is made from two variants of black tea: Assam and Yunnan.
I love the floral pattern of the teacup!
Last but not least, yours truly with the third cup of tea. I wish I can bring it home :) I hope I can have a tea time in the UK one day.
As I told you before, I don't drink coffee, but I do drink tea and usually brew the local blend of jasmine tea, such as Teh Cap Botol (or the cheap ones), hahaha. Do you drink tea? What's your favorite flavor/blend?