My first encounter with Iced Tea was on a trip to America aged 14. Even in my teenage years I knew there was something a bit weird when it came to drinking tea cold out of a glass, so I put it down to an American eccentricity and went on with my life taking our national drink the proper way: warm, with milk and out of an Emma Bridgwater mug. Just as we’ve done for generations.
This weekend was International Iced Tea Day (way more virtuous than World Gin Day which also fell on the Saturday just gone ;) and luxury tea maker Newby challenged me to enjoy a refreshing iced tea in its honour.
For thousands of years, tea has been a statement of grandeur and glory, a ritual enjoyed by us Brits in times of celebration, commiseration, or just because. But thanks to the industrialisation of the tea trade in the 20th century, much of tea’s rich culture was lost as quantity triumphed over quality. Newby was founded in London at the turn of the millennium with a single mission: to reintroduce this quality to our tea and revive the world’s love for it.
By painstakingly sourcing, blending, preserving and serving the world’s finest teas, Newby guarantees that its products have integrity and, most importantly, taste. Not only do they set the bar for tea’s luxury standard, they speak volumes on the lost art of truly understanding and appreciating our well-loved national drink.
Newby has a range of 25 blends of teas and tisanes, all coming beautifully packaged and each with their own glorious tea-inspired artwork. Because I have two kids and don’t exactly get out much any more, I wholeheartedly appreciate lovely packaging and Newby was an example of a product that was a treat to consume from start to finish. Just look at those glorious reds and the beautiful patterns!
Most of Newby’s packaging is inspired by the Chitra Collection, a private museum of antique tea wares, but the patterns on this range of teas are actually photographs of their Chairman’s late wife’s collection of vintage Indian textiles. Newby picked 25 different designs to use photographed them to compliment the 25 teas and tisanes – isn’t that a lovely story behind their packaging?
As Elfie was helping me with my little iced tea-experiment we decided to go with fruity and minty options, selecting the Summer Berries and Peppermint varieties. Newby Teas don’t require any sugar: they’re sweet enough as they are.
The recipe to cook up your own batch of iced tea is mega easy:
Iced Tea with Newby
1 teabag per person
A mug each
Hot water (100 degrees C)
Mint or Berries to garnish (optional)
- Start by boiling your water in a kettle, then letting it stand for a minute or to to ensure it’s not too hot
- Pour over your teabag in the mug (or in a jug)
- Leave to stand until lukewarm
- Pour over ice in a glass and garnish if necessary.
As Saturday was so glorious we headed outside with our drinks to enjoy them in the sunshine.
Elfie really enjoyed the summer berry version, which was like squash but without the overly-sweet taste you’re sometimes left with. I went a bit more grown-up with mine, selecting my favourite hot tea – Peppermint – and really enjoying how drinking it cool and with ice gave that extra pop and punchiness. Delicious – and perfect for a day in the sunshine.
All in, this was an experiment we’ll definitely be repeating again: it worked much better than the Goo experiment we did later on that weekend (don’t ask: don’t buy it: just DON’T DO IT. Iced tea is much safer and tastier).
Huge thanks to the tea aficionados at Newby to introducing us to International Iced Tea day – we’ll definitely be celebrating again next year! Have a look at their website which has got some fab tea gifts for any tea fans in your life – would it be OK to buy the father’s day tea set for myself, I wonder? Newby have kindly offered 15% off all products at their website – click through and use the code MTT15?.
Thanks to Newby for working with MTT.