This new feature is designed to inspire you to look at the world around you, to take note of the season at hand and to capture it – in memory or on film – for posterity. I will be choosing five photos each week for Beekman1802.com with this aim in mind. We’re calling the feature, The Five Most Beautiful Things In The World This Week.
I never let a day pass without a cup of tea. It is a ritual I come by honestly, likely due to my British heritage. I grew up with tea at every meal, even on camping trips! My 88 year-old grandmother, who is from Bedfordshire, is still particular about how her tea is made and I can foresee myself as an ornery old man demanding my cup of tea at 4 pm, sharp, served in a specific cup, brewed in a specific way.
I prefer black teas like orange pekoe, earl grey and chai, which all have citrus notes. These are the ones I drink at breakfast and in the late afternoon. Green tea is nice after a heavy meal and herbal white teas are especially nice when you’re feeling under the weather.
The English science-fiction writer George Orwell was a tea fanatic. In a 1946 essay for the Evening Standard entitled A Nice Cup of Tea, he shared some of his tips for the perfect cup. You can read his essay here.
If his practices are a little too idiomatic for your taste, here are some basic tips for a good cup of tea:
- Preheat the teapot with very hot water to ensure the tea stays warm, and use a tea cozy.
- Make sure the water is boiling when you pour it over the tea leaves or tea bags. It must be boiling for the best flavour. (Green tea is an exception. The water should be poured over the leaves just before boiling.)
- Let the tea steep in the pot for 4 to 5 minutes. If you’re making a single cup, less than a minute is usually enough. (Green tea should steep for no more than 3 minutes or it may become bitter.)
- Good-quality tea can be infused up to three times before the flavor diminishes. Simply pour boiling water over the leaves again, letting it steep for less time with each infusion.
3. Ceramic teapot by artist Magie Smith-Fleisher
4. A photo of teacups from my personal collection
5. Laser-cut paper design by artist Julene Harrison
Andrew Ritchie is the creator of Martha Moments, a blog devoted Martha-Stewart related content and her community of supporters. He lives and works in Toronto, Canada, and has been a longtime friend of Brent & Josh, Beekman 1802 and Sharon Springs. Each week he’ll scour the world (wide web) to find the 5 most beautiful things to inspire you. Follow Andrew on Pinterest.