Saturday, March 19, 2016

The Czech Way of Tea

My husband is Czech, and while he is mostly a coffee drinker, he does surprise me every now and then by drinking a nice cup of tea.

Tea is not hugely popular in the Czech Republic, but they do lean toward herbal and flavored green teas. Fruit teas do not seem to be as popular, which is funny, because that's the very kind my husband seems to prefer. Tea seems to be mostly consumed in the morning and cold evenings.

Local legend says tea was introduced by a Russian anarchist named Mikhail Bakunin. The story goes he asked for a cup of tea, and when no one knew what he was talking about, he proceeded to brew the first cup and introduced the Czechs to tea.

Tea houses are a recent arrival. There were several around the time of WWI, but they did not survive the Communist occupation. The late 1980s saw them return; they are known as cajovny. The varieties of caj (tea) include white, green, black and oolong.

In honor of my husband's heritage, I'm drinking a green tea with ginger and safflower.

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