“If you are cold, tea will warm you; if you are too heated, it will cool you; If you are depressed, it will cheer you; If you are excited, it will calm you.”

―William Ewart Gladstone – 1809-1898

The British brought with them a beverage the Indian subcontinent proudly claimed as its own. Tea was once a medicinal drink consumed in Southwest China. In the 17th Century, having afternoon tea was the fashion of the aristocrats in the British society. An English play of that time would be deemed incomplete without an act or two mentioning a pompous conversation over tea. When the British saw that the Chinese had established a monopoly over the trade of tea, they introduced tea production and consumption in India. The popularity of tea grew with the introduction of tea bags which were an American creation. Also, it became available in many flavours; fruit, herb and spiced. Today, drinking tea at least two times a day has become the inseparable part of the routine of many. In our own part of the world, tea is consumed by all stratum of the society with equal enthusiasm. For most people, it’s not just a drink. It’s a warm cup of joy which awakens a fatigued soul and sooths crinkled thoughts. It’s deliciously bitter taste leaves us pinning for more every time we take the last sip from our cup. From what its history tells us, tea is here to stay as the people’s best loved drink.