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A Sexy Little Tea Geography/History Lesson

Mary Murkin

By, Lady Mary

When a tea client came running into the shop a few months ago, she had one very specific request on her mind.  She wanted to buy some Ceylon tea as a gift for her elderly mother.  She explained that Ceylon tea was her mother’s favorite tea.  I stood there blankly knowing that with ALL of the teas I had on my shelves, none of them were Ceylon tea.  I had heard of Ceylon tea, but was completely at a loss for how to help this nice lady.

This encounter instigated a search for Ceylon tea.  With just a few clicks on my favorite search engine, there was the ANSWER!!!  What a relief to learn these facts (this is the geography/history lesson part of this tale):  In 1971, Ceylon experienced a Marxist insurrection, which was quickly suppressed. In 1972, the country became a republic named Sri Lanka.  There you have it!!  Ceylon was renamed Sri Lanka forty three years ago.  Sri Lanka is one of the largest tea producers in the world, and as a result, Ceylon (its old name) tea can still be enjoyed all over the world.

I quickly gathered from my research that a most common Ceylon tea is a delicious plain black tea.  When brewed, it has a golden color and rich, intense flavor and it is used straight as well as in tea blends.  Armed with this new (very smart) information, I was able to direct this tea client to a number of exquisite teas from Sri Lanka.

Now for the sexy part of this story:   According to a May 13, 2013 article in the NY Daily News, “A hot cup of Ceylon tea is better known as being soothing and relaxing, but Sri Lanka is now marketing its most profitable export as a luxury boost for the libido.”  The tea industry is increasingly boasting of Ceylon tea’s supposed aphrodisiac qualities.  They may not yet have medical proof of Ceylon's performance-enhancing powers, but they have long been the stuff of legend among Sri Lankan tea lovers.  With that said, give it a try-------and at the very least, you’ll still have a tasty cup of tea!

Till the next time we meet---“Bottoms up!”