Friday, October 14, 2011

Tea Talk Friday - Russian Caravan

Good Morning and happy weekend approaching! Today I am going to talk about Russian Caravan Tea - historically, the most important drink after vodka in old Russia. During the time of the Czars, tea would travel by camel from China to Moscow. The tea was famous for the smoky smell of the campfire it would absorb along the journey. In 1689, Russia and China signed the Treaty of Nerchinsk establishing their common border and enabling regular camel caravans to transport tea via Mongolia. The caravans took a long and difficult overland route of over 6000 miles and lasted 6 months. The completion of the Trans-Siberian Railway in 1905 shortened the trip to mere weeks and sent the camel caravans into oblivion. It also changed the tea and today it is any black tea blend with a dash of Lapsang added.

Thanks to James Norwood Pratt's Tea Dictionary - Published by Tea Society Press, San Francisco 2010 - printed in India - for the information.

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