What is Afternoon Tea?

what is afternoon tea

What is Afternoon Tea?

Tea, nowadays, is thought of as a snack for a quick break in between work or as a beverage specifically made to be served with breakfast. The origins of tea time, however, take us back a long time ago. It’s no wonder that the concept of tea time was constructed by the British, due to their intimate relationship with the beverage. When we look at this construct, we find out two different things which, nowadays, are used interchangeably. The afternoon tea and the High tea. Both concepts are steeped in British culture and are actually very different from each other due to the people who made these constructs.

History Of Afternoon Tea

Tea utilization expanded drastically during the mid-nineteenth century and it is around this time Anna, the seventh Duchess of Bedford is said to have grumbled of “having that sinking feeling” during the late evening. At the time it was common for individuals to take just two principle suppers daily, breakfast, and supper at around 8 o’clock at night. The answer for the Duchess was a pot a tea and a light tidbit, taken secretly in her boudoir during the evening.

Later companions were welcome to join her in her rooms at Woburn Abbey and this mid-year practice demonstrated so mainstream that the Duchess proceeded with it when she came back to London, sending cards to her companions approaching them to join her for “tea and a mobile the fields.” Other social ladies immediately grabbed on the thought and the training wound up good enough to move it into the drawing room. A little while later all of in vogue society was tasting the tea and snacking sandwiches toward the evening.

Periodically you will see inns serving a ‘high tea’. Generally, the high societies would serve a ‘low’ or ‘evening’ tea around four o’clock, just before the in vogue promenade in Hyde Park. The center and lower classes would have a progressively generous ‘high’ tea later in the day, at five or six o’clock, instead of a late supper. The names get from the stature of the tables on which the suppers are served, high tea being served during supper.

The Afternoon Tea Menu

There are no set principles about the substance of an what is afternoon tea menu at tea room, however, it generally comprises of sandwiches and an assortment of sweet things. Generally included: finger sandwiches, warm scones with cream, variety of cakes and pastries and choice from a range of teas.

What types of sandwiches are served with Afternoon Tea?

  • Egg sandwiches
  • Cucumber sandwiches
  • Chicken sandwiches
  • Hamd and mustard sandwiches and more

What types of tea are served?

The scope of teas on offer can shift from about six to over a hundred, including some exceptionally uncommon and obscure ones.

  • Earl Grey – A mix of dark teas scented with oil of bergamot named after Charles, second Earl Gray, who was Prime Minister from 1830 to 1834
  • Darjeeling – A fragrant and astringent tea from India, with a trace of almonds and wildflowers
  • Assam – A solid full-bodied tea from India, which has an unmistakable, ‘malty’ season
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