We should always stick to our roots and keep the traditions of our country lively and well-known among the citizens. While some states are difficult to single out the time-honored custom that dates back to the centuries ago, the Great Britain can call it unhesitatingly, and so do everyone, we suppose. What is the event Brits are admittedly noted for? A five-times-a-day tea drinking, of course!
Probably, they haven’t any problems with four of them. But the fifth one seems to be a rather disturbing issue. It made a conscious British man carve a space on the calendar (and a huge one) for not letting it fall into oblivion. So, when is Afternoon Tea Week in 2017 and what’s it all about? Let’s find out!
Taking one step at a time, we’ll start with the history of the tea itself. The motherland of the drink is China and the first records of consuming the beverage are as ancient as the 10th century before Christ. According to the Chinese legends, a culture hero called Shennong was traveling over the lands with a small pot at his hand looking for the medicinal herbs. One day, the leaves of the plant fell into the bowl with the boiling water. After trying the unknown herb, Shennong found that the liquid was pleasing to drink and gave a boost of energy. Thus the leaves of Camellia Sinensis became a popular thing in the country.
The Great Britain discovered its taste due to the Dutch West India Company at the beginning if the 17th century. The king married the Portuguese princess who fancied the hot beverage so much that immediately introduced the tea drinking at court. However, among the folks, it clashed with the strong oppositions of the much-loved alcohol and coffee, although the shops were quick to be built next to the pubs. The king didn’t share the wife’s enthusiasm and even issued the law to increase the duties and ban the public places serving the drink. Interestingly, several weeks on, the decrees were called off as the locals finally partook of the pleasantness of the drink and protested against the government.
With time, this kind of refreshment became a national beverage of the kingdom. The import of the leaves grew with every year and the duties were decreased in ten times. It was approved as the part of the Britain’s army diet while the sailors were forced to live on the half-reduced amount of the rum and half-increased liters of the tea. However, the drink wasn’t still the thing that even the poor population could allow. The last name of the man who made it available for every citizen of the country is not so hard to guess. It was Mr. Lipton – and you’ve definitely tried the refreshing drink that bears this name.
Considering the afternoon tea phenomenon, the tradition comes from the Duchess of Bedford who couldn’t stand the long-established order of having only two meals a day – morning and evening. The hunger made her ask the steward to bring the pot of beverage and the light snacks in between the repasts which effectively help her to refuel the energy. Soon, she started inviting friends and organizing the parties with the following walks through the garden. Thus the custom was distributed over the many houses of the upper crust society.
Nevertheless, the drinking was honored with the title of the people’s daily routine only after Queen Victoria herself got involved in those activities turning them into the posh and pompous tea receptions with more than hundred invitees present.
As for nowadays, the question when is Afternoon Tea Week 2017 is answered for the 7th time as a man called Keith Newton gave start to the revival of the tradition to drink a cup after the lunch yet before the dinner.
What does Afternoon Tea Week mean? First of all, it’s celebrated mainly in Britain but it’s not prohibited to adhere to if you are a true drink’s lover from the outside. The long-lasting holiday is meant to restore to life the good old pastime. Unfortunately, today the tradition held at around four o’clock is not commonplace as the hectic pace of society doesn’t allow to set aside an hour for the quiet reflection.
Well, we should revise the order because the cup of the aromatic beverage is a real treasure both for our health and emotional state. Its leaves contain around three hundred of ingredients, including proteins, fats, and carbohydrates together with more than 10 vitamins and phenol. The latter is responsible for absorbing the radioactive materials while the nicotinic acid and iodine create the reputation of the tea being the drink of longevity. On top of that, it boosts up your spirit, increases the brain’s activity and improves the memory.
Isn’t that a godsend that also comes with the sweets and pastries? In spite of what day Afternoon Tea Week in 2017 is going to be held on, always remember of the benefits you get with every gulp!
The afternoon tea is the intermediate meal that is served after the second repast and before the third one. The tradition has it that Earl Grey, English Breakfast or other flavored sorts of the leaves are accompanied by the wide range of snacks. Originally, there were the scones, small sandwiches of different fillings, cakes, and pastries. On other words, all kinds of the dainties people prefer.
It’s organized between four and six o’clock and even requires some rules of etiquette (which, of course, were relevant at Victorian times). It was obliged to be the leaves, not the teabags; the buns should have been broken in two only with hands; the person was to stir the beverage without any sounds and brown drops on the table and etc.
Obviously, you don’t have to follow that today but you have to know what is the date of Afternoon Tea Week 2017. It starts on August 14 and goes on till August 20.
Also, you don’t need to ask how you celebrate the holiday. You got that from the name!
During the upcoming week, set the rule of sipping the tea and feasting on the finger-licking foods. If you’re an office worker, come to the agreement with the colleagues about the inspiring pause. You see, everyone will like the idea. In case you toil at home, invite your friends to your place and hold the authentic ceremony.
Once in a festive week, drop by the restaurant or café – lots of them are to make special discounts and offerings in honor of the celebration. Look up on the Internet where the theme events are arranged, from the brewing classes and parties to the charity drinking and tastings.
Back to the ceremony with the friends, make the thorough preparations. While you can easily buy the leaves at the shop, the snacks are better to be cooked right in the kitchen. We recommend baking the scones and the cupcakes, which are not difficult to create even if you are an amateur. Stock up on the jams and butter and your event is doomed to succeed!
Afternoon Tea Week Facts
- Will you guess which country is the deep-rooted drinker of this booster of energy? It’s Turkey!
- Brits consume around 160 millions of the cups with the hot brown liquid daily. Could you imagine that? What about the Turks then?
- The most famous tea drinking in culture is the one from Lewis Carroll’s opus called Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland. The three chaps were forced to drink the beverage for all eternity as the clocks stopped at five.
Tick off in the calendar, when is Afternoon Tea Week in 2017, and support the nice and nourishing tradition!