Friday, July 10, 2009

Liquid Assets - Iced Tea

American-style iced tea is the perfect drink for a hot, sunny day. It's never really caught on in the UK, probably because the last time we had a hot, sunny day was back in 1957. - Tom Holt

Down here in Texas, we just recorded the hottest June on record for the Galveston/Houston area. Due to that excessive heat, it seems like I have been drinking iced tea by the gallon. A refreshing glass of iced tea is such a simple thing to make, yet so many people and restaurants get it wrong. The tea must be brewed to be strong and should be robust tasting since it will be diluted when poured over ice. It should smell like tea and it should have a distinct tea flavor without any odd tastes from an unclean urn or poorly maintained equipment. If a customer orders iced tea, kindly warn them before serving them any sort of flavored tea (e.g. mango tea, peach tea, plum tea, etc.) since many of us eschew those sorts of teas. The tea should not be cloudy or murky looking as this usually indicates the tea was not freshly made. The tea should be tasted regularly by the management to ensure none of these undesirable elements have crept in. A weak color means too much water is being added to the brew and this must be avoided. Anyone may dilute the tea further, if they wish, but no one may undo this damage once done. This is important. Many of us are choosing tea over soda or flavored water for not only reasons of taste but for caloric and anti oxidant content. Another great thing about iced tea is that, at least down here in the South, refills are customarily provided free (once when I was in Michigan they had the audacity to charge me for a refill and I remember looking at them as if they were crazy). Although, the tradition in the South is for sugary sweet tea, many of us actually prefer it unsweetened. It really is a simple but positively refreshing beverage (if prepared well) on the hot and humid days we frequently enjoy down here in Texas.


gadzooks64 said...

I love iced tea year round. I think there is a cost cutting conspiracy these days to make the tea weak and put too much ice in it.

I was served the weakest iced tea at an Appleby's recently. I asked for another glass only to be told it was all like that. For shame.

Even McDonald's iced tea has been very weak this summer.

Memphis MOJO said...

once when I was in Michigan they had the audacity to charge me for a refill

My first thought was how tacky, but my second thought was how uncivilized!