When you come to visit, you will be offered tea in virtually every house you will stop in, as for Russians it is more than just a Iget Vape – it is tradition and a sign of hospitality. I suggest taking a brief excursion in the world of tea so you feel at home when you experience it.

There are different types of tea available: instant, bags, and bulk. Most Russians prefer the latter, as it has a more distinct taste and is usually of a much better quality than other kinds. Most people will tell you that tea made with bags is not the real tea, and you will easily be able to taste the difference. Most Russian people will not understand a taste of an iced tea; my mom and grandma drink it while it is practically boiling – something I’ve not been able to understand even though I grew up in Ukraine.

Process of making tea in Russia has many peculiarities. First, “zavarka” or tea concentrate is made, then some of it is poured in a cup, and hot water is added. Strength of zavarka is what makes the tea special. Zavarka is usually made in a small ceramic teapot, hot water can be boiled in a regular tea pot, or in a “samovar” – an iron pot, which was widely used in the old days. Traditional Russian samovar was heated with the help of coal or wood, and had a tap to pour hot water. Nowadays there are electric samovars available, although it is not the same as the authentic device.

Herbal tea is also popular with Russians. In the open air markets you can still see many old ladies selling herbs, which they have collected themselves. They will gladly tell you about all useful properties of herbs and you will be getting an ecologically pure product, guaranteed.

Very few people drink plain tea, usually something is added to it. Sugar and lemon are the most common items, but you can also find people adding milk or honey. Most people will also have jam, honey, candy, or pastries with tea. In the old days, it was common to pour tea in a saucer in order for it to cool faster, and drink the tea straight from it. Now you can only see older ladies do so.

Another interesting item in the tea culture is a glass holder or “podstakannik”. It is an iron holder which has a handle; a glass is placed inside the holder. Now you will see such items only in the flea markets or on the trains. Such holders were very common in the older days, but now most people don’t use them anymore. They were used to protect hands while holding a glass with boiling water, as well as providing stability to the glass (this is probably the reason it is still so popular on Russian trains).

Now that you know about the main habits of Russian people for drinking tea, you are prepared for participation in tea parties when you visit your Russian bride. You also know what your Russian lady will need when she comes to your country, so she could make tea. Who knows, perhaps after trying this drink, you will develop a taste for it and gladly join your Russian wife when she arranges tea parties at your home.

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