How the Queen Drinks Her Tea: Etiquette Expert Reveals Her Majesty Always Pours the Hot Water and Invites Guests to Add Their Own Milk or Sugar
- Expert claimed yesterday that the secret to a good cup of tea was to put the milk in it first
- Etiquette expert William Hanson today revealed how royalty brew and serve tea
- The best way is to add milk after water and Her Majesty is always serving guests
Etiquette expert William Hanson revealed the rules of brewing and serving a cup of tea to perfection on This Morning.
William, who appeared on the show today, insisted that proper etiquette is to be ‘post-lactarian’ and wait to pour brewed tea into the cup before adding the milk.
He revealed that The Queen will always pour the tea for her guests first, adding that the way you served your tea in the 19th century was a reflection of your social standing.
His comments come after Professor Alan Mackie of the University of Leeds argued that people living in hard water areas should consider using the milk first method in tea brewing, as certain minerals inhibit the formation of flavorings.
Etiquette expert William Hanson has revealed the rules of brewing and serving a cup of tea to perfection
1. First pour the tea into the cup to determine the strength
William said that pouring the tea into the cup is an essential part of the tea process and is called the ‘post-lactar’ method.
He explained: ‘You have to put the tea in an empty cup to see how strong [it is]especially if you didn’t brew the pot yourself or if you didn’t keep an eye on the ball and you don’t know how strong or weak the tea is. ‘
‘So you have to see that first, whether you should leave it in or put some water in it.
So correct, the etiquette we would always say is to be a post-lactator. So first tea and then the lactose. ‘
He revealed that the Queen, pictured in 2017, will always pour the tea for her guests first, but will let her decide how much milk or sugar they prefer.
Meanwhile, the etiquette expert went on to say that tea drinkers in the 19th century could determine someone’s social background by how they drank their tea.
William explained, “Supposedly in the Downton era, in the 19th century, the top floor of a house, the aristocracy, would drink from fine china, which was very well made, very expensive. When they put hot liquid in it nothing happened and it was all good. ‘
“But the staff downstairs in the house would drink from slightly cheaper clay cups.
So if the hot liquid went in, the mugs would sometimes crack.
So they first added cold milk as a coolant, so when they put the tea in it, the mug cooled and it didn’t crack.
‘In the 19th century, for example, you could tell someone’s social background from the way they drank tea.’
But despite the suggestion that it was a good method in the Downton Abbey era, William called it a “load of nonsense today.”
He added, “I’ve seen people from very high backgrounds stop their milk first.”
William added that the way you served your tea in the 19th century was a reflection of your social standing
2. Avoid stirring tea with circular motions
The etiquette expert went on to reveal that stirring tea ’round and round’ and making noise was a ‘terrible’ method, saying, ‘We don’t want that.
“Instead, we go back and fourth in a gentle motion of 6/12, 6/12 and a little tap above, then align the spoon with the handle.”
3. Invite guests to pour their own milk and sugar
Meanwhile, William explained that the queen would always be the person to serve tea for guests she meets.
He continued: “Generally in private service, whether it was the royal household or a smart home, or even your own home, it doesn’t matter where – always let the guest put their own milk and sugar in it.
“Some people like a splash of milk, others like milk more than tea, so it’s much nicer to let their guests decide than to do it for them.”
Is adding milk BEFORE boiling water is the secret to the perfect cuppa?
Professor Alan Mackie from the University of Leeds says people living in hard water areas should consider using milk first.
Research conducted in collaboration with INTU, a manufacturer of boiling water taps, has shown that hard water contains minerals that inhibit the formation of flavorings.
But proteins in the milk lower the mineral content of the water, says Professor Mackie, and add flavor to a brew, especially if the water is hard.
“The flavor is generally produced by the various compounds in tea, including tannins in particular,” says Professor Mackie.
The more minerals present in water, the more difficult it is for these compounds to develop the flavor – resulting in the dull cups you get in hard water areas.
Making tea the traditional way – soaking a bag in hot water before taking it out and adding milk – turns the tannins into solids before they can properly develop the flavor.
“But if the milk is added at the beginning of the steeping process, the proteins can bind to the tannins and other minerals in the water – preventing them from solidifying – which in turn gives you a much better taste.”
Hard water, such as that found in London, is rich in calcium and magnesium, while soft water is purer and devoid of these harmless pollutants.
Water is naturally soft when it falls like rain, but collects impurities as it makes its way through the rivers and treatment centers.