Logo courtesy of Twinings website
Recently I visited the historic Twinings Tea shop on the Strand.
In the 17th century, the most popular drinks In England were coffee, gin and ale. The Chinese had been drinking tea for centuries but it had only recently been imported to England and had yet to become very popular.
Along comes Thomas Twining who sets up shop on the London Strand in 1706 in the former Tom's Coffee House, and he introduces tea to his customers. By the 1750's, tea was the most popular drink of the working class.
In that same spot today, this narrow little shop sells tea along with a little bit of history.
Twining's now sells more than 200 teas.
Their expert tasters taste more than 3000 cups of tea per week.
On the high end are these two teas, which sell for between $37-42 for 4 1/2 ounces. Both are two highly coveted Chinese green teas.
These intrigued me. How about a moment of calm? Oh, if it was only so easy to find that elusive moment of calm with a cup of tea!
And for those who like a little bit of this and that, you can put together your own assortment of teas, a bag at a time.
In the back of the shop is a little museum where you can find unusual and special items like this beautiful tea caddy in a sarcophagus shape with brass handles. It dates from the latter part of the 19th century.
Now you may think this is blasphemy in this veritable tea hall of fame, but my eyes were drawn to this cooler of iced tea. Confession time--I am not a hot tea lover. Makes living in London slightly more difficult when you feel like a fish out of water. Believe me, I've tried to like it, with cream, with sugar, without cream, you name it, but it hasn't grown on me yet.
Thankfully, they have a drink just for me--silky smooth and indulgent, it claims. Thank you Twinings for being all things for all people!