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Where did Iced Tea come from?

Summer is the hottest season and there is no better reason to drink refreshing iced tea. Going through our personal collection of iced tea recipes, got us reminiscing about the good old college picnics where we sipped iced tea until it was time to go home. This made us think more deeply about the origins of iced tea. So who actually came up with this concept?


One of the first records of iced tea can be traced to America. A cookery book titled “Housekeeping in Old Virginia” mentioned the cool brew in 1879. The author, Marion Cabell Tyree suggests brewing green tea for a day and then pouring it into goblets that are filled to the brim with ice and adding two teaspoons of granulated sugar. There is also evidence of iced tea being served in restaurants.


Iced tea first came into great prominence in 1904, at the famous St Louis World’s Fair. A plantation owner, Richard Blechynden added ice to his tea samples which he was serving for free. This innovative promotional activity proved extremely successful as it was a very hot day. The rest as they say is history. While Blechynden may or may not have invented iced tea, his marketing endeavours played a major role in popularizing the drink that is adored around the world today.


Iced tea is very simple to make and we highly recommend that you prepare your own. The ready-made ones found in stores are usually packed with sugar and other substances that reduce the nutritional value of the drink. The best method of making iced tea is using the cold brew method where you steep tea in cold water overnight and then strain and serve the next day. This maximizes the aroma and flavour without compromising on the health benefits. Our Long Island green tea is appetizing and tastes flavoursome when used as a base for an iced tea recipe. Click here to shop our teas.

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