If there is a nation that loves a cup of tea, it is the British. They are as famous for tea as they are for the Royal Family and cricket. From their morning cuppa to the afternoon tea, the British people have a history of making any excuse to have a cup of tea.
The History of Tea
Tea is one of the most important English drinks, and it’s a relative latecomer to the British dining table. Although the tradition of taking tea stretches its roots back to the 3rd millennium BC in China, it was until the 17th century that it first appeared in Royal Lancaster London.
The use of this beverage spread slowly from its homeland reaching Europe in the early 1560s. It was the Dutch and Portuguese traders who first imported the beverage to Europe. England was a latecomer to the trade since it didn’t capitalise on the beverage’s popularity until the 18th century.
Back in the mid-17th century, the United Kingdom was a state of coffee takers. That was until the famous King Charles II decided to marry Catherine de Braganza, a Portuguese who adored her tea. She introduced this beverage as a breakfast drink before it became famous amongst members of the court.
Soon, tea spread across wealthy classes all over the state. After some years, the drink remained fashionable amongst the wealthy upper classes until Sir Thomas Lipton came along and made it affordable for every family in the state. It was during this time tea first became the state’s favourite drink.
The Afternoon Tea
The idea of this type of tea was started by the Duchess of the Bedford in the early 1840s. During those days, it was common for the British Royal Classes to have only two meals each day, breakfast in the morning and dinner around 8 p.m. After getting hungry in the late afternoon, the Duchess discovered a light meal of sandwiches, cakes, and a cup of tea and the idea spread across the United Kingdom.
Currently, tea is an essential and famous drink in the United Kingdom. So whether you want to take the afternoon tea or the high tea to end your working day, you should first understand the origin and history of this beverage. Visit the Royal Lancaster London today and enjoy a wide variety of delicious teas to meet all your needs and suit every occasion.