Google fails me in finding the verse I recently read comparing coffee...I paraphrase:
coffee--harried and hurrying
tea--savoring, soothing, sitting.
Winter time for me is. Tea Time.
Over the last decade, I've become a bit of a connoisseur. Maybe a bit of a tea snob. My earliest taste memories of tea were from my growing up years in the 60s and 70s. We drank spoon-able mixtures--stored in old jelly jars--and gifted for Christmas. Remember those? The lids gritted open to contents of sugar, Tang and Lipton powdered tea. Lipton offered about one variety--dark and bitter. In college we dunked those bags ritualistically in our mugs atop long, formica-surfaced cafeteria tables.
In Atlanta mid-29something, I worked elbow to elbow on magazine staff with artsy types who sported, deskside, their own tea kettles, pretty ceramic mugs with lids and colorful cardboard boxes of wax paper sealed natural fiber tea bags containing a rainbow offering of herbs. I learned about Stash brand back then and thought it primo and still think it a notable brand.
Back then, sometimes tea was good. Too often it was bitter, stale, tasteless or had gone sadly cold.
Somewhere, I got savvy and I realized why I and so many people didn't care for tea too much (if we could see beyond our mugs of varying shades of brown coffee) was that we didn't know how to choose it, make it or serve it. Whuh? Once a tea drinker or a would-be drinker masters a few details, the beverage is transformed. Trust me on this and then, pardon me if you already know all this. Watch "The Journey with Grace" subsequent weeks (most likely Mondays,) to read about brands and varieties I've found yummiable, what I use to sweeten or not, to heat, serve and keep it deliciously hot. Meanwhile, happy sipping!
Photo: Rowena Soriano Gonzlez Aldridge