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Analysis of Sweet Tea

Once again, my wife has gotten me going on a topic that I must blog about, despite the fact that it is completely unrelated to everything else. Hopefully it will be half as popular as my basketball post, which was the last random rant I did and was linked to by ESPN. Yay.

Anyway, the topic is Sweet Tea! Huge props to Slate for doing a great article covering the phenomenon of sweet tea. No props for not having trackbacks. Lame.

Here are the facts of the matter as I see them:

  1. No restaurant in the northeast makes a good cup of iced tea. Too bitter or too sweet. They do not know how to make it happen.
  2. I remember my first day “up North”. I arrived at college, having never visited before applying/accepting/going, and I go out to eat. Appalled by a variety of terrible events: First, it’s not very good, which I kind of expected. Second, no free refills. No free refills defies the whole southern hospitality of sweet tea. I was glad to see that it got called out at the end.
  3. There is something I think was missed in the article and also missed in the 150+ comments on the article: True homemade tea needs to be SUN TEA. That is how I was raised. It heats and brews naturally for several hours in the hot sun and you are rewarded with the king of refreshment.
  4. I don’t feel the need to heat it hot enough to absorb all the sugar, because it must be sun tea! I am a believer in preparing simple syrup to accompany and sweeten.

Here is my recipe: Add one bag of “Lipton Cold Brew”, the large bags, and three bags of your favorite flavored tea, I like a nice peach ginger tea, to a one quart glass pitcher of water. Cover with Saran Wrap and put it out in the sun for a few hours. Remove tea bags, add some syrup (1 part water, 1 part sugar, boil and cool) and enjoy!

Good sun tea is one of the few undeniable pleasures in life.

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