The perfect cuppa

 THE PERFECT CUPPA

Tea has been around for over 5,000 years and the UK is a nation of tea lovers, drinking 165 million cups of tea a day, but what is the secret to a perfect cuppa? 

THE TEA

First of all, the tea itself, did you know that how you store tea is important?  It should always be stored in a cool dry place in an airtight container, and away from any strongly scented or flavoured foods, and, whether you prefer loose tea or tea bags, you shouldn’t overbuy tea, it may seem like a bargain, but unless stored properly, the last cups from that bumper box may have lost their oomph!

THE WATER

Next the water, people often comment on how different tea tastes the further south they travel in the UK, this is because water hardness, along with other factors such as chlorine content, greatly affects the taste (and smell!) of tea.  For the perfect cup every time consider installing a water filter, and, for true tea aficionados, Kinetico can install a Mineral Plus filter, which adds in the perfect amount of calcium and magnesium to not only make delicious drinking water, but the ultimate cup of tea.  Tea will always benefit from freshly drawn boiling water, in order to attain the best flavour from the leaves, the water must contain oxygen, which is reduced by re-boiling.  Plus, boiling only the water you actually need saves electricity, money and the planet!

Brew time.  Less than two minutes, you’re probably American!  Although at the end of the day, it’s personal preference, most tea manufacturers recommend around three to four minutes.

THE GREAT MILK DEBATE

Milk first or last? Ah, the most hotly contested question since cream or jam first on a scone!  Well, the answer is… it depends.  The Royal Society of Chemistry studied this issue in 2014, and concluded that milk should be first because, “Degradation of milk proteins is liable to occur if milk encounters temperatures above 75°C. If milk is poured into hot tea, individual drops separate from the bulk of the milk and come into contact with the high temperatures of the tea for enough time for significant denaturation to occur. This is much less likely to happen if hot water is added to the milk.”

However, whilst the UK Tea & Infusions Association agrees with this advice for tea from a pot, it recommends milk last when brewing tea in a mug.   

So now you can put your feet up with the perfect cup of tea, the only thing left to decide is whether to dunk or not to dunk that biscuit …