Irish breakfast tea
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Irish Breakfast Tea is a blend of several black teas, most often a combination of Assam teas and Ceylon teas. Irish tea brands, notably Barry's, Bewley's, Lyons and Robert Roberts in the Republic and Nambarrie's and Thompson's Punjana in Northern Ireland are heavily weighted towards Assam. It is one of the most popular blended teas, common in Tea culture in Ireland. Tea was first introduced in Ireland in the mid-18th century. Despite the tea being introduced during the mid-18th century, it was mainly introduced to upper classes; however, throughout the mid-19th century, Irish Breakfast Tea became readily available for all to enjoy. The Irish population have one of the highest rates of tea drinkers globally.
Due to its strength, Irish Breakfast Tea is commonly served with milk, but may also be consumed black, with sugar or even with honey. Irish Breakfast Tea has a robust taste, and is red in colour. As dairy products are a major part of the Irish economy, most people drink tea with milk. Being a black tea, it has a strong flavour and higher caffeine content than green, oolong, or white teas. The tea is virtually never referred to as "breakfast tea" (except as the name of specific blends produced by Barry's, Bewley's, Thompson's and the British brand Twinings) and is drunk throughout the day. Irish Breakfast tea leaves are sought from India, Rwanda and Kenya it is said that its the African leaves that make a good refreshing breakfast tea.
The majority of tea is sold as boxes of tea bags, but all of the major brands are available in loose leaf form, allowing the consumer to inspect the proportion of hand-picked buds and whole tea leaves as against broken fannings of indeterminate origin. When brewed, the tea varies in colour from very dark red to brown.
- English breakfast tea
- English afternoon tea
- Full breakfast
- Tea culture in Ireland
- Tea in the United Kingdom
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