It's iced tea season and every summer people ask us how to make the perfect refreshing brew. Learn how to MAKE PERFECT ICED TEAS every time with our tasting event on June 6th. See all the details and information for this evening here!
According to the Tea Association of the U.S.A., iced tea accounts for roughly 85% of all tea consumption in America. Especially in the southern states, iced tea or “sweet tea” is a staple component of common hospitality. The first documented recipe for iced tea is in a cookbook written in 1839 called The Kentucky Housewife, where the author, “Mrs. Lettice Bryan,” labels it as “tea punch.” It calls for making a “very strong tea” and adding “one pound and a quarter,” or approximately 2 and a half cups, of sugar. This is to be served either hot, or cold. With Kentucky’s scorching summers, cooling off your household favorite with ice is a no-brainer.
Thankfully, there are so many amazing high-quality teas and herbal blends today that we no longer need to compensate with sweetness! We always recommend that if you enjoy a tea hot, you should try it iced. The cold versions open up countless possibilities for parties, picnics, work, or even just relaxing at home. You can go for the classic, using a strong Assam black tea (such as our Assam Blend or Irish Breakfast), which gives you the dark brew that goes incredibly well with fresh lemon. We find that fruity, minty and floral teas also work well.
“But how do I make iced tea?” This is always an excellent question, and we are always happy to provide a few different answers! A go-to method is to steep twice the amount of tea for the recommended time, pour over ice, and top off your glass with more ice! The strength comes through, while the first round of ice cools the tea, adding more ice on top chills it to a refreshing temperature.
Another favorite is the cold-brew method. This strategy takes more time, but is shockingly easy. Place a tablespoon of tea into a vessel (like our Cold Brew container), add cold water, and place in the fridge. Depending on the tea, it will be ready in 30 minutes to 1 hour. Because you don’t use boiling water with this method, you don’t run the risk of extracting bitter flavors from the leaf and results in a wonderfully simple crowd-pleaser. Also, all of the teas you know and love from brewing with hot water will give up different flavors and continue to impress (psst... my favorite is Lime Ginger)!
Another favorite is learning to make instant iced tea with our tea grinder from Japan. Simply grind your favorite tea and shake into a water bottle! Its that easy!
And so, we hope to have proven to you that tea does not need to be shelved for Stampede season. With an abundance of ways to create it at home, and our ice machine running through summer, you can continue to get that tea fix and be prepared to brave the sun.