Tea for the Irish
When one thinks of Ireland, what's the first thing that comes to your mind? Probably not tea… but it should be.
Do you know that the Irish drink more tea per capita than the Chinese, more than the Russians, and significantly more than the famed tea-loving English? Truth be told, the normal Irish individual drinks more tea in a year than the combined average Canadian, American and Mexican (virtually all of North America!)
So why are the Irish so fanatical about tea?
Let’s investigate a bit of Irish history.
Amid WWII, Ireland announced itself a neutral country and declined to give England set up naval bases on their coasts. This made the English government quite furious, so in retaliation, they restricted the amount of tea and coal allowed into Ireland (tea was then exclusively brokered in England, as well as coal).
The Irish government, maddened by this, set up their own brokerage as soon as the war had ended, known as Tea Importers Ltd., buying their tea directly from the source and vowing to never buy from England again.
Since then, drinking tea was done as a sign of Irish independence. A culture was built around it, it was celebrated.
So this Saint Paddy’s Day, have a drink that’s authentically Irish: steep a cup of tea!