Turkish tea

Turkish tea

Turkish tea



Tea, which is a hot drink with at least 5000 years of history, entered Turkish culture a little late, but completely. Although it may seem to foreigners that Turkish people are popular with Turkish coffee and most tourists bring their loved ones Turkish coffee from Turkey, Turkish tea is much more immersed in Turkish culture. Turkish people have different routines for tea during the day, but definitely, they drink it from the morning until they sleep. Turkish people met the tea in 19th century and people in Black Sea Region started cultivating it at the end of the same century. Gradually, tea became an inseparable part of Turkish culture. It is also the symbol of friendship and hospitality. To illustrate, friendships, home visits, business meetings, negotiations, i.e., everything, from the most casual encounters to the most formal ones, start with drinking tea and are shaped around this culture.

Tea Culture in Turkey

Tea is a drink that is served both at homes and in all kinds of cafes, restaurants, etc. It even has special locations that serve only tea. The name of these places are associated with coffee and called ‘Kahve’ or ‘Kahvehane’, but they basically serve tea which is cheaper and easier to find than coffee. These places can be found in nearly all neighborhoods, together with around the beaches in holiday locations. Moreover, tea is an essential beverage at homes of Turkish people. They make tea when a guest is coming or there is a gathering of friends or family. They even make tea when someone comes to their home to work, such as a plumber, cleaner or constructor of any kind. Tea is served to show acceptance and good deeds. If you are a guest in somewhere in Turkey and you are not offered tea, you should be worried about the intentions of your hosts.

- Tea is called ‘Cay’ in Turkish. Although the word ‘Cay’ entered the Turkish language from Chinese, it is highly accepted and used in Turkey as a Turkish word. The same word is used in Indie and Japanese, too.

- In Turkey, teapots consist of two parts. The upper part is smaller and the lower one is larger. To make Turkish tea, you should start with boiling some water. Then you should put the herb to the upper part of the teapot. You should add the boiling water to the upper, smaller pot and add more water to the one below. Then you should wait for a while for the herb to give its color to the water. This process is called ‘demlenmek’ in Turkish.

- Tea is served in various forms of glasses lately, but the traditional way is to put it in tulip shaped clear glasses, which are specially made for drinking Turkish tea. These glasses also come with matching little plates and tea spoons.

- Once your tea in the pot is ready, you should pour some colored tea from the upper pot to the glass and add boiled water on it. The amount of the colored tea from the upper pot determines the intensity of the tea.

- Tea is generally served with two cubes of sugar. However, most Turkish people don’t use sugar because it ruins the taste of it. Some people find the taste very strong and add more sugar.

- Besides being a cultural essential, Turkish tea is proven to have many health benefits. Most Turkish people consume tea after meals because it helps the digestion. It is also good for the health of heart and blood vessels. Psychologically, it has a calming effect. Therefore, after every argument or hard discussion, Turkish people offer each other tea both to calm down and as a symbol of kindness.

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