Page 7 - preparation of tea
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2. Brewing and Service Instructions
Imperative in any discussion of brewing and service is the importance of training. Tea requires “careful” preparation, and the staff should be trained in the “why” the “how” , and a little history of what they are presenting. When an establishment commits itself to a “good cup of tea”, it will mean a bit more work initially, but the results, both to the bottom line and in customer satisfac- tion, will more than compensate.
1.) Fresh cold water should be brought to a roiling boil, but not allowed to boil for a long period of time as it tends to dissipate the air bubbles therefore “flattening” the beverage and adversely affecting the taste.
2.) A porcelain or porcelain-like teapot should ideally be used. However, non- breakable materials are available for heavy traffic restaurant service. The teapot should be preheated by pouring a small amount of boiling water into the pot and allowing it to sit for a few seconds.
3.) A tea bag or bag(s) should be added to the pot according to size (1 bag per cup). Loose tea may be substituted (1 teaspoon per cup).
4.) Boiling water should be poured directly over the tea and allowed to brew for 3-5 minutes. 5.) Milk (never cream), sweetener, and lemon wedges should be made available.
6.) At the appropriate time, the waitperson should offer a fresh cup of hot water and provide
a fresh teabag.
E. Merchandising Hints
• Food service operators may want to promote tea by providing menu listings; by stocking several types of tea; and by having waitstaff suggest tea to the customer.
• Waitstaff should encourage tea consumption by allowing customers to select their tea from several types available. A tea chest is an excellent vehicle to use for this purpose and adds to the overall tea “experience”.
• Waitstaff should ask customers if everything is to their satisfaction and readily offer fresh hot water with a fresh teabag. At 2-3 cents per serving, the foodservice operator has an excellent low cost/high profit means of crating a very favorable impression for their operation.
Given the potential profitability of tea and the growing popularity of this beverage among American consumers, it is in the foodservice operators’ best interest to pay special attention to their service and merchandising methods.
III. Tea and Food Safety
There are three basic types of tea derived from the same plant known as Camellia Sinensis. The beverage has been safely consumed for nearly 5000 years without any documented reports of foodborne illness. As a result of the process which raw tea undergoes in production, the finished leaf is relatively free of harmful bacteria.
If the storage, brewing, and sanitation recommendations in this manual are followed, the end product will almost certainly be consumable without danger of illness. This statement assumes that the prepara- tion area has not become a cross-contamination hazard from outside sources and that personnel practice proper hand washing techniques.
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