It’s a no-brainer that coffee is beloved by many. Most people can’t function without it. What is less talked about is coffee’s cousin—tea—which is just as beloved by people. Because it is recognized as such a sought-after beverage all over the world, people celebrate International Tea Day every December 15. Although, the United Nations introduced another International Tea Day on May 21. More tea, I guess!
International Tea Day is meant to raise awareness on how farmers and workers are affected by the tea trade. However, tea lovers worldwide take this day to simply celebrate tea and all its goodness. I drink tea when I want to relax. My favorite flavors are chamomile and earl grey.
Afternoon Tea is a popular way to enjoy tea. Traditionally, it’s enjoyed with scones, sandwiches, and sweets presented on a three-tiered tray. In some places, you can have a pot of your afternoon tea and a glass of sparkling wine.
Before you head out for Afternoon Tea, there are some etiquette rules you have to keep in mind.
While there’s no specific dress code, it’s an unspoken rule to dress in smart casual. Since the pandemic hit, there have been little reasons to whip out your favorite outfits, so this is the perfect excuse to take them out of your closet.
Respect The Teacup
Hold your teacup by the handle. Under no circumstances should you cup your hands around it. When stirring your tea, the teaspoon shouldn’t clang and hit the sides of the teacup. Instead of stirring in circles, stir your tea up and down as if folding in the sugar or milk into your drink. Don’t forget to take the teaspoon out of the teacup and place it on the saucer. Drinking from your teacup with the teaspoon in it is not only dangerous (as you could poke your eye or cause a spillage) but it’s frowned upon.
Leave The Saucer Alone
We’ve all seen movies where characters hold their saucers below their teacups when they’re drinking tea, but it’s not necessary unless you’re standing.
Keep Your Pinkie Down
Contrary to popular belief, you should keep your pinkie finger down when you’re holding the teacup. Instead, you can use your pinkie or thumb to balance your teacup by supporting the cup from its underside.
Finally, Enjoy Your Tea Gracefully
If it’s still too hot to drink, don’t blow on it to cool it down. Instead, let it cool on its own. Take some time to catch up with whoever you’re with. Once your tea is cool enough to drink, take small and quiet sips.
If you’re looking for a place to experience Afternoon Tea, here are some of our recommendations:
bai Hotel Cebu has an Afternoon Tea Delight set with a three-tiered acrylic tower pastry case. You can choose to have your pastries with coffee or tea. Good for three people, the set costs Php4,303.20. Plus, you can take home the pastry case!
Radisson Blu Cebu also has its version of Afternoon Merienda. You get a three-tiered tray of Filipino sweets and savory snacks. Served with coffee and good for two people, the set costs Php980.