Saturday, June 21, 2008

Nice Cup Of Tea

Chinese Workers Memorial, Murphy's, CA

Even in the U.K., getting home to a nice cup of tea is something to be appreciated. Getting a good tea flavour is very sensitive to the water used, its temperature, length of steeping and, of course, the kind of leaf. This all means that the maxim "there's no place like home" goes double when it's paired with a decent cuppa.

Alas, when travelling here in the USA you can basically forget it anywhere except at home. Time and time again, in hotels the notion of "hot tea" is something completely alien to all those involved. The water delivered to your table is anything but hot - and most certainly not boiling as it needs to be - and likely as not is served in a jug that's held coffee on 99 out of 100 previous occasions. When I first moved here I tried pointing this out, only to be met with a blank stare, a shrug or a "never thought of that" response. Sigh.

Given the long history of Asian influences in the Bay Area I had rather hoped that hotels round here would have figured this all out, but alas not. Peet's, Starbuck's etc. seem to do OK but then given what they charge one might hope so.

Therefore, I've basically given up, closing my eyes and drinking anyway whatever is dumped in front of me. On the plus side, at least it gives me something else to look forward to about getting home.

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