June is one of our favorite months of the year, not only because it marks the official start of summer, but also because it’s National Iced Tea Month! There’s nothing better than spending a lazy summer day cooling off with a refreshingly crisp glass of iced tea in hand. So, in honor of the beverage savored by over 158 million Americans daily, we’ve broken down five facts about tea that will definitely make you crave a glass of your own.
A Homage to Marion and Sweet, Sweet Tea
While tea has been around for a long time – since 2737 B.C., to be exact – it was always served hot until someone finally had the bright idea to pour it over ice! It’s shocking that it took humanity that long to figure how to turn their favorite hot drink into a cool beverage, but hey, we can’t judge too harshly – they didn’t have Google! The genius who first documented this earth-shattering discovery in Buckeye Cookbook is Estelle Woods Wilcox and, subsequently, Marion Cabell Tyree published a recipe for iced Southern sweet tea in her famous cook book, Housekeeping in Old Virginia. Thank you, Estelle for your “tea-nnovation” and thank you, Marion, for sweetening the world just a bit more with your added twist!
Tea IS good for me!
Tea’s benefits go way beyond its delicious taste. It is actually really good for you, so indulge in as much as your heart desires because the research clearly supports your habit! Among other healthy ingredients, tea contains antioxidants, a fancy buzzword that basically means it helps remove damaging oxidizing agents living in our bodies. Studies have even shown that tea may help with weight loss and prevent tooth decay. We’re not saying tea is responsible for your summer bod and pearly whites, but... science.
Pair Tea Like a Fine Wine
Similar to wine, tea can and should be paired with foods that bring out the most of its taste. Just as you would pair a red wine with red meat, or a Chardonnay with fish, note the flavor of your tea when considering pairing options. An English Breakfast tea balances perfectly with rich desserts, such as chocolate or custards. And now we’re hungry. And thirsty.
Thank You, Prohibition!
When America found itself in the dry claws of prohibition during the 1920s, drinking establishments found solace in serving strong iced tea as a substitute for hard liquor due to its bold flavor. However, tea was also used as a cover up for hard liquor as well. The infamous Long Island Iced Tea was created during prohibition in Kingsport, Tennessee as a way to hide gin, rum, tequila and vodka by serving it disguised as ice tea. Brilliant.
America’s Favorite Tea
This may or may not come as a surprise to you, but tea is considered to be the most consumed beverage in the world, right alongside water, and is the only drink that is regularly served hot or over ice 24/7/365. According to the Tea Association of the U.S.A. Inc., approximately 80% of tea consumed in the United States is iced, which is why this refreshing beverage has an entire month dedicated to its glory!
At Royal Cup, we’re proud to join in on the well-deserved celebration. Join us, and raise a cold glass of iced tea glass in its honor! And then drink it. Because it’s delicious.