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Tea and Food Pairings

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Matching tea with food.

There are so many different wonderful flavours of teas from all around the world that the different permutations of pairing with food are endless. Perhaps the best example is that of wines and food, but it is worth keeping in mind that matching teas with food is very much an evolving art and as with most things, is very much down to personal taste.

That said however, there are some general guidelines beginning to emerge that might be of some help and here are some suggestions to consider below.

Food Suggestions Tea Suggestions Comments
Red meat, English Style Breakfasts ( fried foods) Black teas from Ceylon, Kenyan, Assam, Breakfast Blends, Lapsang Souchong, Keemun, Green Teas, Earl Grey Similar to comparing red wines and foods, black teas are great accompaniments to full flavoured foods such as red meat or spicy foods
Egg dishes, fish, Continental style breakfasts, Poultry Darjeeling, Dark Oolongs, Ceylon Black Teas Great accompaniment to lighter savoury meals or after dinner
Seafood, salads, chicken Sencha Green Tea, Light Oolongs, Lapsang Souchong, Darjeeling, Jasmine Light Oolongs are particularly good with seafood
Spicy Foods Assam, Ceylon, Keemun, Green Teas, Lapsang Souchong Bright and lively flavoured teas work well with rich spicy foods.
Chinese Oolongs, Yunnan, Keemun Whilst traditionally Oolongs would normally be proposed, for some of the more spicy dishes its worth trying a black Yunnan or Keemun for added depth.
Desserts Jasmine, Golden Monkey, English Breakfast, Assam Chocolate desserts are particularly well paired with teas such as Assam and Golden Monkey
Afternoon Tea Ceylon Teas, Jasmine, Earl Grey, Kenya, Darjeeling, Green teas Most teas work well - but it is worth experimenting with different blends and flavours.
After Dinner White Teas, Green Teas, Pu-Erh, Peppermint Herbal Infusions Pu-Erhs are known to aid digestion so are often enjoyed after large meals. Peppermint is a refreshing herbal infusion also known to aid digestion, but be aware not to drink if you suffer from GORD as peppermint will exacerbate the symptoms.
Supper Rooibos, Honeybush, Camomile, Peppermint or Fruit Infusions If you don't want to partake of any caffeine before going to bed, why not try a herbal infusion such as Rooibos or Honeybush as it offers a great depth as well as pleasant sweet taste. There are many flavours on the market to enjoy and experiment with.

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