Food & Wine

Victoria Tea Pleasures 2013

In a frantic and hurried world, Victoria offers a respite from the chaos of everyday life. The pages are dedicated to living beautifully when entertaining, cooking, and decorating and even in artistic pursuits - and now you can enjoy every single page on your tablet! With a distinct personality all its own, Victoria personifies feminity, passion, and an enterprising spirit. Each issue features decorating and entertaining ideas, recipes, travel stories, essays from inspiring women, and much more.

United States
Hoffman Media
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7 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
dear friends

Among the most welcomed words are these: Come for tea. Over the years, my experiences with tea have been centered around low tables in the lofty lobbies of historic hotels; food-laden tiered trays in charming, independently operated tearooms; and simple, flavorful cups held in my hand during moments shared with a dear friend. In every instance, those inviting words were spoken to initiate the intimate feeling that is central to taking tea. Although customs for the celebration of tea vary by country and region, the basic ritual of preparation is the same, pot after steaming pot. Sweets and savories may change from season to season, but the loose tea should always be the best quality available. Take care to follow the recommendation for water temperature, as more fragile varieties (such as whites…

1 min.
brewing perfect tea, cup after cup

1. Fill a kettle with fresh, filtered cold water. 2. Warm the teapot with hot tap water. 3. Heat the water in the kettle according to tea type: • For black, heat to a rolling boil (212°).• For green, heat to less than a boil (approximately 170°).• For oolong, heat to less than a boil (190°–205°).• For white, heat to much less than a boil (approximately 160°). 4. Discard the warming water in the teapot. 5. Place 1 teaspoon of dry tea leaves per cup of water in a tea sack or an infuser basket. Place the sack or infuser in the teapot. 6. Pour heated water over the leaves in the pot. 7. The brew time varies by type: • For black, steep 3–5 minutes, or to taste.• For green, steep 2–3 minutes, or to taste.• For…

2 min.
a tea glossary: finding your favorite

Throughout the centuries, tea manufacturing has created four main families of tea enjoyed around the world. All categories are derived from either the Camellia sinensis or the Camellia assamica plant. It is the processing of the fresh leaves that determines the tea family: white, green, oolong, or black. Herbals, tisanes, and infusions are produced from leaves, roots, bark, seeds, or flowers of other plants. These lack many of the unique characteristics of true teas, however, and generally contain no caffeine. WHITE is the most delicate of the tea families. Careful attention must be given to water temperature and steeping time. These teas are naturally lightly oxidized, yielding flavors that are soft and smooth, with a hint of peach pit and the lingering sweetness of honey. First produced in eleventh-century China, this…

2 min.
tools of the tray

Like a classic strand of pearls accessorizing the perfect dress, lustrous accoutrements offer a crowning touch to the tea table. Amidst snow-white fields of embroidered linen topped with gleaming silver trays, lush bouquets, and fine china, these lovely yet practical accents add radiant charm. Every gracious tea service requires a few implements to help the hostess entertain with ease. For brewing, a teakettle is ideal for heating the water. In Victorian times, the kettle was transported to the drawing room. Today, it usually remains hidden from view. Modern varieties can be programmed to reach a specific temperature—a plus for preparing different blends— but traditional vessels boil efficiently. Although early teapots were made of silver, many tea devotees believe the beverage tastes better when poured from a porcelain model. Filled with loose…

1 min.
serving foods with tea

Eyes dance when a tiered stand laden with delectable tea fare appears. Often ornamented with ribbons, doilies, and blossoms, each level of the shapely serving piece displays a different course. Mouthwatering savories beckon—ribbons of cucumber topping white bread coated with velvety herb butter, mounds of chicken salad cresting in delicate phyllo cups, and creamy egg salad thickly spread on pumpernickel and garnished with a sprinkling of fresh thyme. Cinnamon fills the air, the pungent aroma a clue to the flavor of fresh-baked scones nestled beside a handful of glistening strawberries and grapes. The top tier displays luscious nibbles of rich chocolateorange truffles, zesty lemon-poppy-seed cake, and palate-cleansing lavender cookies that promise a sweet culmination to the afternoon’s festivities. According to author and former tearoom proprietress Jane Pettigrew, the tiered server originated in…

2 min.
tea additives

The unadulterated cup of tea certainly has its supporters. In a 1946 edition of London’s Evening Standard newspaper, author George Orwell wrote an impassioned treatise on proper consumption. “I know very well that I am in a minority here,” he admitted. “But still, how can you call yourself a true tealover if you destroy the flavour of your tea by putting sugar in it? It would be equally reasonable to put in pepper or salt.” Nevertheless, many appreciate accentuating the flavors of their favorite blends. It is customary for servers to supply these upon request, but the practice of placing small pitchers of milk, plates of sliced lemon, and bowls of sugar or jars of honey on the table has become more acceptable in recent years. Tea expert Bruce Richardson encourages guests…