Southern Iced Tea (Sweet)
There is a debate going on in my tiny world over Southern Iced Tea and what makes a great tea. It seems that we as a group of discussing foodies like a few restaurants that serve a very good brewed tea. We disagree and are arguing about the blend that makes up the tea. Community Tea, brewed by J Gumbos Restaurant is among our favorite. It is a mix of Orange and Black Pekoe teas. We can find information about the Community tea from Internet resources. Contea that is sold by vendors who buy from John Conti Distribution is very good too. My pal buy’s his Contea almost everyday from White Castle restaurants in our area. It is also made of a blend of black tea (fermented tea). I am assuming that it is an Orange and Black Pekoe tea blend also. You might think that if you looked in the supermarket and bought any of the Orange/black pekoes type tea blends that you could make a great tea….hmmmmmm. Not so!
I think an experiment is at hand….off to the market I go.
I bought 3 types of tea for this taste test throw down….I could have bought 10 more types of tea and may add more teas in this “sip off” in the future. Lipton is a favorite in the store according to the empty shelf space. I grabbed a small box for my experiment. Community Tea was offered to me by my pals at J Gumbos Restaurant and I took them up on the offer. Finally I decided to go with a Kroger Private Selection English Breakfast tea.
6 bags will be brewed in 1 quart of boiling water for 15 min. Upon removal of the tea bags, 1 1/3 cups of sugar will be added to each container and stirred until the sugar completely dissolves. Finally an additional quart of cool water or the proper amount of water to bring the tea to 1 gallon total volume will be added and the tea will be chilled in the refrigerator for 4 hours before the taste test.
All things being the same the best Southern Style Sweet tea to my mouth was the Community tea. It was robust without being too bitter. Lipton was good too but just not as tasty (bit weak). The Private Selection English Breakfast Tea is my favorite iced tea when I mix the blend with spearmint but not as a Southern Sweet Tea.
Perhaps there should be round 2…. Community tea vs. Others?