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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 24 Jul 2015, 21:37 
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Abi wrote:
Oh my goodness, Costa tea is the worst thing ever :shock: . They seem to have tried it in various incarnations - in a mug, in a glass with handle, in a clear teapot with the teabag in a tube thing (which I always thought was for loose tea)... every version I've tried has been terrible.


Costa's basic problem with tea is that they make it in the American style - water not boiling and the tea bag often goes in after the water. Unfortunately this is true of all the global coffee chains - not one of them makes tea with boiling water.


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 24 Jul 2015, 21:55 
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Yes, I get quite disgruntled when I go to a café where they purport to make the drinks behind the counter, but all they do is pour the hot-ish water into a little pot and then you have to pick your own teabag from near the till. I mean, I like the choice of tea, I just wish they had half a clue how tea should be made!


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 24 Jul 2015, 22:43 
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I remember coming back from living in Germany nearly forty years ago and being appalled at the excuses for coffee I was served in England. Instant coffee is an abomination and few people knew what decent coffee should be like. I was, therefore, very pleased when coffee shops began appearing here. Costa, Nero et al. don't pretend to be tea-merchants. They probably don't understand why someone wouldn't want coffee. If you want a decent cup of tea, I think it has to be a greasy spoon and a big teapot with ten tea bags floating in it. Tea is a simple thing. Steep the stuff in some boiling water, and I mean boiling, add some milk if you want it; whatever floats your boat, but I don't think we should knock coffee shops for not providing good tea.


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 24 Jul 2015, 23:12 
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Gottfried wrote:
I remember coming back from living in Germany nearly forty years ago and being appalled at the excuses for coffee I was served in England. Instant coffee is an abomination and few people knew what decent coffee should be like. I was, therefore, very pleased when coffee shops began appearing here. Costa, Nero et al. don't pretend to be tea-merchants. They probably don't understand why someone wouldn't want coffee. If you want a decent cup of tea, I think it has to be a greasy spoon and a big teapot with ten tea bags floating in it. Tea is a simple thing. Steep the stuff in some boiling water, and I mean boiling, add some milk if you want it; whatever floats your boat, but I don't think we should knock coffee shops for not providing good tea.


I am of the opinion that, as they claim to supply tea and charge you for doing so, they should be doing it properly. If they don't want to do it properly (or can't) then they should stop supplying tea.

In practice, the coffee's often quite ropy too. Some staff are definitely better at it than others, and a good outlet can go dramatically downhill when staff change. At least when you go to a greasy spoon you know the coffee will be poor but cheap whereas the chains often supply coffee that is no better for double and triple the price.


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 24 Jul 2015, 23:20 
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Victoria wrote:
I am of the opinion that, as they claim to supply tea and charge you for doing so, they should be doing it properly. If they don't want to do it properly (or can't) then they should stop supplying tea.


This.

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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 24 Jul 2015, 23:58 
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Abi wrote:
Victoria wrote:
I am of the opinion that, as they claim to supply tea and charge you for doing so, they should be doing it properly. If they don't want to do it properly (or can't) then they should stop supplying tea.


This.

I also agree and, often, I drink a herbal tea as I can't drink caffeine and decaffeinated coffee just doesn't cut it for me

Love this thread and agree with so much of it! Freshly made bed, good cuppa, fresh bread, walking on a brisk and sunny morning anf just after it's rained...and choral music! I could keep going...


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 25 Jul 2015, 00:24 
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Victoria wrote:
Gottfried wrote:
I remember coming back from living in Germany nearly forty years ago and being appalled at the excuses for coffee I was served in England. Instant coffee is an abomination and few people knew what decent coffee should be like. I was, therefore, very pleased when coffee shops began appearing here. Costa, Nero et al. don't pretend to be tea-merchants. They probably don't understand why someone wouldn't want coffee. If you want a decent cup of tea, I think it has to be a greasy spoon and a big teapot with ten tea bags floating in it. Tea is a simple thing. Steep the stuff in some boiling water, and I mean boiling, add some milk if you want it; whatever floats your boat, but I don't think we should knock coffee shops for not providing good tea.


I am of the opinion that, as they claim to supply tea and charge you for doing so, they should be doing it properly. If they don't want to do it properly (or can't) then they should stop supplying tea.

In practice, the coffee's often quite ropy too. Some staff are definitely better at it than others, and a good outlet can go dramatically downhill when staff change. At least when you go to a greasy spoon you know the coffee will be poor but cheap whereas the chains often supply coffee that is no better for double and triple the price.



I agree, and also, 10 teabags - ugh! And they probably go into the mug, rather than the pot, after the milk's gone in, which appals me. (I had trouble controlling my expression in a particular famous café when they did that!)


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 25 Jul 2015, 08:49 
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whitequeen wrote:
Victoria wrote:
Gottfried wrote:
I remember coming back from living in Germany nearly forty years ago and being appalled at the excuses for coffee I was served in England. Instant coffee is an abomination and few people knew what decent coffee should be like. I was, therefore, very pleased when coffee shops began appearing here. Costa, Nero et al. don't pretend to be tea-merchants. They probably don't understand why someone wouldn't want coffee. If you want a decent cup of tea, I think it has to be a greasy spoon and a big teapot with ten tea bags floating in it. Tea is a simple thing. Steep the stuff in some boiling water, and I mean boiling, add some milk if you want it; whatever floats your boat, but I don't think we should knock coffee shops for not providing good tea.



I am of the opinion that, as they claim to supply tea and charge you for doing so, they should be doing it properly. If they don't want to do it properly (or can't) then they should stop supplying tea.

In practice, the coffee's often quite ropy too. Some staff are definitely better at it than others, and a good outlet can go dramatically downhill when staff change. At least when you go to a greasy spoon you know the coffee will be poor but cheap whereas the chains often supply coffee that is no better for double and triple the price.



I agree, and also, 10 teabags - ugh! And they probably go into the mug, rather than the pot, after the milk's gone in, which appals me. (I had trouble controlling my expression in a particular famous café when they did that!)


I don't drink tea, but even I was appalled to see a Spaniard place a tea bag, milk, sugar in a mug of cold water and heat it in a microwave! :shock: :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 25 Jul 2015, 11:10 
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Many years ago our family went to Florida and my Mum had a difficult time as she does not like coffee. At the time the Americans made tea by placing water and tea bags in an urn and allowing to stew for as long as coffee. The resulting brew would not only allow a spoon to stand upright but would then slowly start to eat into said spoon. She switched to orange juice. I think they have improved recently.

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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 25 Jul 2015, 13:09 
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Gottfried wrote:
I remember coming back from living in Germany nearly forty years ago and being appalled at the excuses for coffee I was served in England.

Every time I come back from NZ I am apalled at the coffee unless I use Beanhunter to research the cafes first!


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 25 Jul 2015, 13:19 
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Some controversy following my comment about tea in coffee chains. I do agree that they shouldn't bother at all if they can't make decent tea. I like strong tea, which is why I like the tea they serve in greasy spoon cafes and roadside burger vans, usually from a pot kept topped up but with the same bags in most of the day!
Re American tea, can I tell a short story? My wife and I saved up for our 25th anniversary in 2008 and went to New York on the Queen Mary 2. On the first day, in the self-service cafeteria, an elderly and rather shaky American lady asked me if I would mind putting the boiling water in her teacup as she didn't trust herself not to spill it. She was quite specific in her choice of tea from the range available and gave me polite instructions to have the tea color the water but not too dark, and certainly no milk please, which she thought a strange habit. She and I coincided several times in the cafeteria in the following days and I made her tea to her specification each time. She was very gracious and made a big fuss of me. I was informed on our last day by a crew member that she was the actress Jane Russell.


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 25 Jul 2015, 17:30 
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Gottfried wrote:
I was informed on our last day by a crew member that she was the actress Jane Russell.


How lovely!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: 25 Jul 2015, 17:53 
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Love the Jane Russell story! And now I want toast :)


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 26 Jul 2015, 14:59 
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Well, I go a lovely cafe nearby and tea and coffee come to your specifications.

Whilst I was having treatment for cancer, I couldn't drink coffee, so I'd have a pot of Earl Grey tea, always beautifully served, and would be told that if I wanted more hot water, just to ask.

BTW: waitress service, always. Friendly, children welcome, small children provided with high-chairs and toys. After your second visit, you are considered to be a regular customer, so you may pop in to use the loo if you are desperate.

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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 26 Jul 2015, 16:54 
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I was just thinking about this... big café chains offer coffee to your exact specifications ("if you're not happy, tell us and we'll make it again") - why can't they realise that tea needs the same kind of service?


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 26 Jul 2015, 19:23 
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whitequeen wrote:
I was just thinking about this... big café chains offer coffee to your exact specifications ("if you're not happy, tell us and we'll make it again") - why can't they realise that tea needs the same kind of service?


I feel it may have been my specifications for camomile tea (In a cup, not a glass, warm the cup, teabag first and THEN the water) that lead to the local Costa dropping camomile tea altogether....


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 26 Jul 2015, 20:08 
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Victoria wrote:
whitequeen wrote:
I was just thinking about this... big café chains offer coffee to your exact specifications ("if you're not happy, tell us and we'll make it again") - why can't they realise that tea needs the same kind of service?


I feel it may have been my specifications for camomile tea (In a cup, not a glass, warm the cup, teabag first and THEN the water) that lead to the local Costa dropping camomile tea altogether....


Wow. "If we have to play your way then I'M NOT PLAYING!"


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 27 Jul 2015, 13:26 
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What always struck me in the US hotels I used to have stay in for work, was that they made quite the ritual / ceremony about having tea - the special wooden box with the tea bags, opened with a flourish by the waiter, the cast iron cauldron of water presented to the table - and yet because the water wasn't boiling, the tea was awful.

I'd rather skip the ritual and have boiling water, thanks.


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 28 Jul 2015, 09:57 
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Cheesey and/or childish films. Specifically High School Musical.


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 Post subject: Re: There's nothing quite like a nice cup of tea
PostPosted: 28 Jul 2015, 10:12 
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National differences in how tea is made was a plot device in the Second Best Marigold Hotel film - not a classic, but even the memory of Maggie Smith's acerbity is making me smile.


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