It’s the little things that can really make a truly memorable tea experience. This month I wanted to explore the presentation of tea in more detail.
Loose-leaf tea with a tea timer
When I first arrived in Brisbane, I did the inevitable thing that every tea lover does, which was to seek out tearooms. I was pleasantly surprised at the number of tearooms there were, some of which I’ve blogged about. I came across a place which really made me smile. After selecting a tea, it was presented to me as is shown in the photo below.
The lady ticked all the right boxes: she told me how long the steep should be; there was an accompanying tea timer; and just look at the matching teapot, teacup, and saucer! What a fantastic experience! The only teeny weeny thing I remember was that the teapot was on the left and I had to turn the plate around so that I could pour the teapot with my right hand. But when it was presented to me, I had, in fact, moved the handles around in order to take the photograph. When presenting tea, the teapot handle and teacup ought to be facing right so that the customer finds it easy to pour and lift the teacup. Overall though, this was a great tea presentation.
Heading over to Adelaide, I had a wonderful tea chat with a woman I believe was the owner. I finally opted for a Long Jing in what was a blend of tea cultures: loose-leaf Chinese tea, a beau-tea-ful English tea cup with a saucer, and a French Press.
When the tea was presented to me, the lady kindly explained how long it had steeped and how to use the plunger – it was great to see the loose leaf in the French Press. Tea-tastic! I’m also pleased to say that the French Presses for tea and coffee were kept separately in this establishment. I have experienced coffee-tasting tea in other establishments, unfortunately. It was my own fault for ordering Long Jing since the green tea would remain in the press and my second cup inevitably tasted bitter, but I have to give this place top marks for presentation. See how the handles are presented in the right way?
Back to Brisbane and another fabulous tearoom. I’ve been here several times and on each occasion, each tea presentation was different. I’ve had a tea cosy before and a white teapot with accompanying teacup and saucer, but this was definitely my favorite – a modern teapot with a classic white porcelain teacup and saucer. Truly magical.
How important do you think tea presentation should be to a tearoom?